|English Abstract: |
Purpose: Web2.0 has facilitated the emergence of mass collaboration. Being a new model of virtual collaboration, mass collaboration has distinct characteristics such as self-organized voluntary participation and many-to-many communications mechanism. Behind the sparking achievements, mass collaboration systems are suffering from high coordination cost, reflecting intense conflict among the participants. This study explains how conflict interacts with its antecedents (participation and task complexity) and decedent (group performance) related to the mass collaboration process.
Design/methodology/approach: Theoretical model is built upon literatures. Twenty-six measurable items, including social network indices used to reflect conflicts (e.g., density and degree), are extracted from Wikipedia database. The structural equation modeling is used to validate the proposed model.
Findings: Participation increases task complexity, conflict and performance; task complexity and conflict increase group performance, but task complexity decreases conflict.
Research limitations/implications: This study is limited to one mass collaboration platform, other contexts can cause variance in the result. More characteristics of conflict network (e.g., self-loop) should be taken into consideration in future studies.
Practical implications: Conflict management is critical to mass collaboration, and functions that increase the awareness of conflict may motivate users to participant, resulting better group performance.
Originality/value: Few studies have investigated the consequences of conflict in mass collaboration context. Meanwhile, limited number of social network studies build network based on negative link. Moreover, most of extant studies on Wiki are descriptive researches without theoretical model. This study builds a theoretical model and incorporates social network approach to explore the infl uence of conflict.