This innovative book explores the structure, growth and effectiveness of virtual communities in computer-mediated environments. In spite of initial enthusiasm, much uncertainty remains about the prospects of virtual teams and the technology that supports their collaboration. This book seeks to confront these issues and offers a unique insight into the realities of virtual working.
Combining both software and organizational learning perspectives, this important volume investigates the role of computer-mediated-communication (CMC) in dispersed teams, focusing particularly on the communication processes involved. By combining theoretical and case study material, the authors argue that successful teamwork can be achieved without face-to-face contact, even whilst undertaking unstructured and non-routine tasks. These comprehensive case studies show that by changing the structure of the organization in addition to the use of advanced technologies, new and important patterns of communication have emerged in virtual communities.
An essential resource for academics working in the fields of management science and organizational learning, this valuable study will also be of interest to managers, practitioners and the wider open source software community as a whole.