ArticlePDF Available

Work Group Diversity



Work group diversity, the degree to which there are differences between group members, may affect group process and performance positively as well as negatively. Much is still unclear about the effects of diversity, however. We review the 1997-2005 literature on work group diversity to assess the state of the art and to identify key issues for future research. This review points to the need for more complex conceptualizations of diversity, as well as to the need for more empirical attention to the processes that are assumed to underlie the effects of diversity on group process and performance and to the contingency factors of these processes.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
Work Group Diversity
Daan van Knippenberg
and Micha
ela C. Schippers
RSM Erasmus University, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Rotterdam 3000 DR, The
Netherlands; email:,
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007. 58:515–41
First published online as a Review in
Advance on August 11, 2006
The Annual Review of Psychology is online
This article’s doi:
2007 by Annual Reviews.
All rights reserved
Key Words
group composition, group performance, teams, team effectiveness,
organizational behavior
Work group diversity, the degree to which there are differences be-
tween group members, may affect group process and performance
positively as well as negatively. Much is still unclear about the effects
of diversity, however. We review the 1997–2005 literature on work
group diversity to assess the state of the art and to identify key issues
for future research. This review points to the need for more com-
plex conceptualizations of diversity, as well as to the need for more
empirical attention to the processes that are assumed to underlie the
effects of diversity on group process and performance and to the
contingency factors of these processes.
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
Diversity: a
characteristic of
social grouping that
reflects the degree to
which objective or
subjective differences
exist between group
STROKES....................... 517
DIVERSITY..................... 519
Typologies of Diversity ........... 519
Beyond Demographic and
Functional Diversity ........... 521
Beyond Dispersion ............... 522
Faultlines: Interacting Dimensions
of Diversity ................... 523
CONTINGENCIES............. 524
Social Categorization Processes . . . 525
Processes ..................... 527
Social Categorization Processes As
Moderator of Information/
Decision-Making Processes .... 528
Cooperation and
Interdependence .............. 529
Time/Team Tenure ............... 530
Diversity Mind-Sets .............. 531
RELATIONSHIPS .............. 532
CONCLUSIONS................... 532
Groups in organizations have become increas-
ingly diverse over the years and will con-
tinue to become more diverse in years to
come ( Jackson et al. 2003, Triandis et al.
1994, Williams & O’Reilly 1998). Organi-
zations have become more diverse in terms
of demographic differences between people
(e.g., in terms of gender, age, and ethnic-
ity). Moreover, organizations are increasingly
adopting work group compositions that in-
corporate differences in functional or educa-
tional background, such as in cross-functional
project teams; mergers, acquisitions, and joint
ventures also introduce diversity into work
groups. Because work group diversity may
have positive as well as negative effects on
group performance (for reviews, see Jack-
son et al. 2003, Milliken & Martins 1996,
Williams & O’Reilly 1998; also see recent An-
nual Review of Psychology chapters by Guzzo &
Dickson 1996, Ilgen et al. 2005, Kerr & Tin-
dale 2004), the questions of which processes
underlie these effects of diversity and how to
manage these processes pose major challenges
to research in organizational behavior. In the
present article, we aim to assess the state of
the art in this field. In doing so, we strive to
answer the question of what we may conclude
from the extant research as well as to provide a
research agenda for diversity research in years
to come.
Although the field is known as “organi-
zational diversity,” theory and research fo-
cus almost exclusively on the work group
level, studying how group composition affects
group performance, cohesion, and social in-
teraction, and group members’ commitment,
satisfaction, and other indicators of subjec-
tive well-being. This review, therefore, fo-
cuses on work group diversity and how it af-
fects groups and their members. Diversity is
a group characteristic, but there is a stream
of research on what is called relational de-
mography (Chattopadhyay et al. 2004a, Tsui
& O’Reilly 1989) that studies the effects of
individuals’ similarity to their work group
(e.g., Chatman & Flynn 2001, Chatman &
O’Reilly 2004, Chattopadhyay 1999, Chat-
topadhyay & George 2001) or to their leader
(Epitropaki & Martin 1999, Tsui et al. 2002)
as predictors of individual outcomes. Because
greater dissimilarity from the group does not
necessarily imply greater work group diver-
sity (e.g., a sole female in an otherwise all-
male group is very dissimilar to the group in
terms of gender, while at the same time the
group is quite gender-homogeneous), results
from studies on relational demography cannot
be taken to directly reflect diversity effects.
Space limitations force us to restrict the cur-
rent review to studies of diversity as a group
516 van Knippenberg
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
characteristic, although we do refer to rela-
tional demography studies when they seem
relevant to the issue under consideration.
The starting point for our article is a sem-
inal review by Williams & O’Reilly (1998),
who examined 40 years of diversity research
covering more than 80 studies. The Williams
& O’Reilly review is an important milestone
not only because it provides a comprehensive
review of the diversity literature at the time,
but also because it is somewhat of a watershed
in diversity research. The state of the field
that emerged from the Williams & O’Reilly
review is one that has yielded largely incon-
sistent results, probably in part as a result of
a somewhat too simplified approach to diver-
sity. In the years following the review, how-
ever, the field moved to more sophisticated
conceptualizations of diversity and its effects,
and we hope to capture this development in
the present review. We take the excellent work
done by Williams & O’Reilly as a stepping-
stone and review diversity research in the pe-
riod from 1997 to 2005.
To access the relevant literature, we con-
ducted a PsycInfo search of titles and abstracts
covering this period and a manual search of
the 2000–2005 volumes of major journals in
applied psychology and organizational behav-
ior. We also sent out a mailing to solicit pa-
pers in press. We should note, however, that
our aim is not an exhaustive coverage of the
literature, but rather a more selective review
that highlights the developments we judge to
be most relevant and important.
In the following sections, we first intro-
duce the research field. Second, we address
the issue of the conceptualization and opera-
tionalization of diversity, arguing in favor of
more complex conceptualizations of diversity
than typically have been used in diversity re-
search. Next, we focus on what we may learn
about the processes underlying the effects of
work group diversity by reviewing studies of
the mediators and moderators of the effects
of diversity, and we briefly touch on possible
curvilinear effects of diversity. We conclude
by summarizing what we see as the most im-
differences between
work group members
may engender the
classification of
others as either
ingroup/similar or
categorizations that
may disrupt group
diversity may
introduce differences
in knowledge,
expertise, and
perspectives that
may help work
groups reach higher
quality and more
creative and
innovative outcomes
portant questions for future research. These
questions center around the need to develop
conceptualizations of diversity that go beyond
mere dispersion as well as the need to pay
greater attention to the processes mediating
the effects of diversity and to the contingen-
cies of these processes.
Diversity is typically conceptualized as re-
ferring to differences between individuals on
any attribute that may lead to the percep-
tion that another person is different from self
( Jackson 1992, Triandis et al. 1994, Williams
& O’Reilly 1998). In principle, diversity re-
search may concern any possible dimension
of differentiation, but in practice diversity
research has primarily focused on differ-
ences in gender, age, ethnicity, tenure, ed-
ucational background, and functional back-
ground (Milliken & Martins 1996, Williams
& O’Reilly 1998). The key question in di-
versity research is how differences between
work group members affect group process and
performance, as well as group member atti-
tudes and subjective well-being. To address
this question, diversity research has largely
been guided by two research traditions:
the social categorization perspective and
the information/decision-making perspective
(Williams & O’Reilly 1998). This is not to say,
however, that these are well-articulated theo-
retical perspectives in diversity research. Of-
ten they represent a more loosely defined em-
phasis on either the preference to work with
similar others or the value of diverse informa-
tion, knowledge, and perspectives.
The starting point for the social catego-
rization perspective is the notion that simi-
larities and differences between work group
members form the basis for categorizing self
and others into groups, distinguishing be-
tween similar ingroup members and dissimi-
lar outgroup members. In diverse groups, this
may mean that people distinguish subgroups
Work Group Diversity 517
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
within the work group. People tend to fa-
vor ingroup members over outgroup mem-
bers, to trust ingroup members more, and
to be more willing to cooperate with them
(Brewer 1979, Brewer & Brown 1998, Tajfel
& Turner 1986). The result of such catego-
rization processes may be that work groups
function more smoothly when they are homo-
geneous than when they are more diverse, and
that group members are more satisfied with
and attracted to the group when it is homoge-
neous and they are similar to the other group
members. This analysis is corroborated by
findings of, for instance, higher group cohe-
sion (e.g., O’Reilly et al. 1989), lower turnover
(e.g., Wagner et al. 1984), and higher perfor-
mance (e.g., Murnighan & Conlon 1991) in
more homogeneous groups.
The social categorization perspective is
complemented by the similarity/attraction
perspective (Williams & O’Reilly 1998),
which does not concern social groups but
rather focuses on interpersonal similarity (pri-
marily in attitudes and values) as determinants
of interpersonal attraction (Berscheid & Reis
1998, Byrne 1971). The similarity/attraction
perspective arrives at the same basic predic-
tion as the social categorization perspective in
diversity research, that people prefer to work
with similar others ( Jackson 1992).
In contrast to the social categoriza-
tion (and similarity/attraction) perspective,
the information/decision-making perspective
emphasizes the positive effects of work group
diversity. The starting point for this perspec-
tive is the notion that diverse groups are likely
to possess a broader range of task-relevant
knowledge, skills, and abilities, and members
with different opinions and perspectives. This
gives diverse groups a larger pool of resources
that may be helpful in dealing with nonrou-
tine problems. It may also set the stage for
more creative and innovative group perfor-
mance because the need to integrate diverse
information and reconcile diverse perspec-
tives may stimulate thinking that is more cre-
ative and prevent groups from moving to pre-
mature consensus on issues that need careful
consideration (van Knippenberg et al. 2004).
Corroborating this analysis, some studies find
an association of diversity with higher perfor-
mance and innovation (e.g., Bantel & Jackson
In their simplest form (a main effect of
diversity), neither analysis is supported. Ev-
idence for the positive effects as well as for
the negative effects of diversity is highly in-
consistent (Bowers et al. 2000, Webber &
Donahue 2001, Williams & O’Reilly 1998)
and raises the question of whether, and
how, the perspectives on the positive and
the negative effects of diversity can be
reconciled and integrated. Because the
information/decision-making perspective fo-
cuses on task performance, whereas the social
categorization perspective seems to put the re-
lational aspect more center stage, some schol-
ars have concluded that diversity may be good
for group performance while at the same time
it is bad for interpersonal relations and atti-
tudes toward the work group (e.g., Triandis
et al. 1994). Given the relationship between
group interaction and cohesiveness on the one
hand and group performance on the other
hand (De Dreu & Weingart 2003, Mullen
& Copper 1994), however, it is difficult to
see how the outcomes described by the social
categorization and the information/decision-
making perspectives could occur simultane-
ously. Indeed, there hardly seems to be ev-
idence for both occurring at the same time
(but see Keller 2001).
One thing that stands out in this respect
is that the field has been dominated by stud-
ies focusing on “main effects,” testing rela-
tionships between dimensions of diversity and
outcomes without taking potentially moder-
ating variables into account ( Jackson & Joshi
2004, Pelled et al. 1999). Narrative reviews
and meta-analyses alike seem to corroborate
the conclusions that this main effects ap-
proach is unable to account for the effects
of diversity adequately (Bowers et al. 2000,
Webber & Donahue 2001, Williams &
O’Reilly 1998). It seems time to declare the
bankruptcy of the main effects approach and
518 van Knippenberg
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
to argue for models that are more complex
and that consider moderating variables in ex-
plaining the effects of diversity. Accordingly,
the present review largely disregards studies of
potential main effects in favor of studies iden-
tifying moderators of the effects of diversity.
This focus on moderators is important not
only to identify when diversity may be ex-
pected to have positive or negative effects, but
also because it is informative about the pro-
cesses underlying the influence of work group
diversity (i.e., moderator effects observed may
corroborate conclusions about the processes
in operation). Attention to these processes
is important, because another major imped-
iment to the advancement of the field is a ten-
dency to assume rather than assess mediat-
ing processes. When a social categorization
perspective is argued to predict negative ef-
fects of diversity and these are observed, the
implicit conclusion is that social categoriza-
tion processes occurred even when no em-
pirical evidence for such processes is pro-
vided. In similar vein, often the occurrence
of information/decision-making processes is
concluded from the observation of positive ef-
fects of diversity on group performance with-
out evidence regarding the processes taking
place during group interaction. The predicted
outcome is not necessarily evidence of the
predicted process, however, and relying on
outcomes to determine process runs the risk
of resulting in misleading conclusions. The
field may thus benefit from more attention to
the processes translating work group diversity
into outcomes, and the current review empha-
sizes studies that shed light on these mediating
processes. First, however, we address another
issue that emerged more recently—the possi-
bility that conceptualizations of diversity that
are more complex may yield more insight into
the effects of diversity.
Diversity may be seen as a characteristic of a
social grouping (i.e., group, organization, so-
ciety) that reflects the degree to which there
are objective or subjective differences between
people within the group (without presuming
that group members are necessarily aware of
objective differences or that subjective dif-
ferences are strongly related to more objec-
tive differences). Such a definition and similar
definitions coined by others (see above) leave
unanswered a couple of important questions
about how to deal with diversity conceptually,
however, and some of these are quite salient
in current research in diversity. Our review
of the field suggests that four issues in this
respect especially warrant attention: first, the
possibility to better understand the effects of
diversity by distinguishing between different
types of diversity; second, the potential added
value of moving beyond the study of demo-
graphic and functional diversity; third, the po-
tential added value of conceptualizations of
diversity that move beyond simple dispersion;
and fourth, the notion that diversity’s effects
may be better understood if the influence of
different dimensions of diversity is studied in
interactions rather than as additive effects.
Typologies of Diversity
To introduce some higher-order structure in
diversity research, a number of researchers
have proposed typologies that may be used
to classify different dimensions of diversity.
These typologies include the distinction be-
tween readily observable demographic at-
tributes (e.g., gender, race/ethnicity, age) that
may be less job related and less easily dis-
cernable, and more job-related attributes such
as differences in educational or functional
background ( Jackson 1992, Jehn et al. 1999,
Milliken & Martins 1996, Pelled et al. 1999,
Schneider & Northcraft 1999, Tsui et al. 1992;
cf. Harrison et al. 1998). In addition, a number
of researchers have argued that it is also im-
portant to take into account differences that
may not be readily visible but are not always
job-related either, such as differences in per-
sonality, attitudes, and values (Bowers et al.
2000, Harrison et al. 1998, Jehn et al. 1999).
Work Group Diversity 519
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
The question from the current perspective is,
Do these typologies help in making sense of
the effects of diversity?
Some researchers have proposed that de-
mographic diversity, as well as diversity in
personality, values, and attitudes, has negative
effects on group performance and affective-
evaluative responses to the group, whereas
diversity on more information-related dimen-
sions, such as education and functional back-
ground, is more likely to have positive ef-
fects on group performance ( Jehn et al. 1999,
Pelled et al. 1999). Although this reason-
ing makes intuitive sense, it does not seem
to be supported by the data. In support of
the moderating role of diversity type, Jehn
et al. (1999) found that informational diver-
sity was positively related to group perfor-
mance and commitment, whereas perceived
value diversity (which does not necessarily re-
flect actual value diversity; cf. Harrison et al.
2002) was negatively related to group perfor-
mance and group member satisfaction, intent
to remain, and commitment. Contrary to pre-
dictions, however, demographic diversity was
unrelated to group performance and was pos-
itively related to member satisfaction, intent
to remain, and commitment, as well as to per-
ceived work group performance. Pelled et al.’s
(1999) hypotheses implied that functional di-
versity would be positively related to group
performance, whereas demographic diversity
would be negatively related to group perfor-
mance, but neither type of diversity was re-
lated to group performance.
Other studies incorporating both demo-
graphic and informational dimensions of di-
versity report very similar relationships for,
on the one hand, demographic diversity and
presumably more job-related dimensions of
diversity and, on the other hand, outcomes
such as group performance, information use,
and learning as well as team member sat-
isfaction and commitment (Dahlin et al.
2005, Schippers et al. 2003, van der Vegt
& Bunderson 2005). Bunderson & Sutcliffe
(2002) report positive and negative relation-
ships with team process and performance for
different forms of informational diversity. In
addition, there are also other reports of pos-
itive effects of demographic diversity (e.g.,
Bantel & Jackson 1989) and negative effects
of informational diversity (e.g., Simons et al.
1999) that run against the proposed moder-
ating role of diversity type. Together these
findings suggest that the distinction between
diversity types is not associated with differ-
ential relationships with outcome variables.
Most importantly, perhaps, meta-analyses do
not support the notion of type of diversity as
moderator of the positive versus the negative
effects of diversity either—although it should
be noted that these meta-analyses only cov-
ered a subset of the studies that could poten-
tially have been included. In a meta-analysis of
13 studies, Bowers et al. (2000) distinguished
gender, personality, attitude, and ability di-
versity and found no reliable relationship
between any form of diversity and group per-
formance. In a meta-analysis of 24 studies,
Webber & Donahue (2001) distinguished be-
tween highly job-related and less job-related
diversity and found no reliable relationships
for either form of diversity, neither with group
performance nor with group cohesiveness.
An important conclusion to emerge from
the current state of the art is that, contrary to
what seems popular belief, the positive versus
the negative effects of diversity are not associ-
ated with job-related informational diversity
versus less job-related demographic diversity,
neither for group performance nor for more
affective/evaluative responses to the group.
Interestingly, this means not only that orga-
nizations should be a bit more cautious in
their enthusiasm for functional diversity, but
also that they can be more optimistic about
the possibilities to benefit from demographic
The inability to reliably link the positive
and negative effects of diversity to types of di-
versity has led van Knippenberg et al. (2004)
to propose that diversity research abandon
attempts to explain the effects of diversity
through typologies of diversity. In contrast,
they propose that all dimensions of diversity
520 van Knippenberg
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
may in principle elicit social categorization
processes as well as information/decision-
making processes, because all dimensions of
diversity in principle both provide a basis for
differentiation and may be associated with dif-
ferences in task-relevant information and per-
spectives. Following this conclusion, and in
deviation from earlier reviews (e.g., Milliken
& Martins 1996, Williams & O’Reilly 1998),
we do not structure the current review by di-
versity dimension, but rather we aim to high-
light the processes that may be engendered
by diversity and the contingencies of these
Beyond Demographic and Functional
Perhaps understandably, diversity research
has mainly focused on demographic and func-
tional/educational diversity. Other dimen-
sions of diversity that may be less easily cap-
tured by the existing typologies have received
less attention, although they may be equally
relevant to our understanding of group func-
tioning. For instance, a growing number of
studies link diversity in group member per-
sonality (mostly conceptualized in terms of
the five-factor model of personality; Costa
& Macrae 1992) to group performance and
more processes-related measures, such as
team social integration (Barrick et al. 1998;
Barry & Stewart 1997; Harrison et al. 2002;
Mohammed & Angell 2003, 2004; Neuman
et al. 1999; Neuman & Wright 1999; Schnei-
der et al. 1998; Van Vianen & De Dreu 2001).
So far, the picture emerging from these stud-
ies is quite inconsistent for the relationship
between personality diversity and group pro-
cess and performance, and further research
addressing the contingencies of these rela-
tionships seems in order.
Others have also pointed to diversity in at-
titudes and values as an influence on group
functioning (Hoffman & Maier 1961). Here,
too, findings are highly inconsistent. Some
studies suggest that diversity in attitudes and
values may be associated with negative out-
comes (Harrison et al. 1998, 2002; Jehn &
Mannix 2001; also see Jehn et al. 1997, 1999).
Some of these studies also show, however,
that diversity in attitudes and values may be
associated with positive outcomes (e.g., so-
cial integration) or may be unrelated to these
outcomes (Harrison et al. 1998, 2002). The
conclusion seems justified that diversity in
attitudes and values, too, is worthy of research
attention, but that we need more complex
models to capture the potential influence of
this diversity (cf. Harrison et al. 1998).
Socially shared cognition and affect typi-
cally is not considered in diversity research,
but it arguably concerns dimensions of di-
versity. Research in socially shared cognition
shows how individuals’ understanding of their
team and their task (conceptualized as task
representations, Tindale et al. 1996; mental
models, Cannon-Bowers et al. 1993; team
schemas, Rentsch & Hall 1994; or beliefs,
Cannon & Edmondson 2001) may be shared
among group members to a greater or lesser
extent [i.e., group members may be more or
less similar in their understanding of the team
and the task (Mohammed & Ringseis 2001;
also see Colquitt et al. 2002, Klein et al.
2001, Schneider et al. 2002)]. Because the
level of sharedness may affect group perfor-
mance (Mathieu et al. 2005), diversity in such
team- and task-relevant cognitions deserves
a place on the agenda of diversity research.
In a similar vein, affective states (i.e., moods,
emotions) may be shared to a greater or
lesser extent (George 1990, Totterdell 2000,
Totterdell et al. 1998), and the extent to which
affect is shared has been shown to be related to
group cooperation and conflict (Barsade et al.
2000). Affective diversity thus also warrants
further research.
In sum, then, without denying the impor-
tance of the study of demographic diversity
and diversity in functional and educational
background, many other dimensions of diver-
sity may influence group process and perfor-
mance and therefore deserve research atten-
tion. This would seem to hold all the more
because an understanding of the effects of
Work Group Diversity 521
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
demographic diversity seems at least partially
to require an understanding of the more psy-
chological dimensions that demographic dif-
ferences are often presumed to be associ-
ated with, such as differences in attitudes,
values, and perspectives (Beyer et al. 1997,
Chattopadhyay et al. 1999, Cox et al. 1991).
That is, analyses of demographic diversity to
a certain extent treat demographic differences
as proxies for deeper underlying differences
(Priem et al. 1999), and investigating this pro-
posed link as well as the processes governing
the influence of these underlying differences
may increase our understanding of the influ-
ence of demographic diversity.
Beyond Dispersion
Diversity research has typically operational-
ized diversity as the dispersion of group mem-
bers’ positions on a given dimension of di-
versity. Differences between group members
are reflected in indices of the extent to which
group members differ from each other, such
as the standard deviation, Euclidian distance
(Tsui et al. 1992), Blau (1977), and Teach-
man (1980) indices, and the coefficient of
variation (for a detailed discussion of these
measures, see Harrison & Klein 2005, Har-
rison & Sin 2005), or simply by distinguish-
ing groups with high versus low dispersion.
Harrison & Klein (2005) note that dimen-
sions of diversity may differ in the extent to
which they represent different positions on
a continuum (e.g., attitudes), different nomi-
nal categories (e.g., gender), or different po-
sitions that are associated with greater or
lesser power or status (e.g., educational level).
Differences between group members on dif-
ferent dimensions may therefore mean dif-
ferent things, and Harrison & Klein urge
researchers to be more explicit about their
conceptualization of diversity (e.g., whether it
associated with status or power differentials),
and to choose operationalizations that are
commensurate with their conceptualization
(also see Sørenson 2002, Williams & Me
Moreover, a couple of considerations sug-
gest that there are potential benefits in com-
plementing simple dispersion models with
more complex conceptualizations and oper-
ationalizations of diversity (cf. Chan 1998,
Kozlowski & Bell 2003; also see the discus-
sion of faultlines below). Research on rela-
tional demography (i.e., focusing on individ-
ual dissimilarity to the work group rather than
on diversity) shows that being dissimilar to
the work group more negatively affects peo-
ple who are typically in majority positions in
Western organizations (i.e., men, Caucasians)
than it does people who are more often in the
minority position (i.e., women, members of
ethnic minorities; Chatman & O’Reilly 2004,
Tsui et al. 1992). To the extent that these
outcomes for dissimilar group members af-
fect group functioning and performance (e.g.,
through lower satisfaction, lower cohesion,
and higher turnover), we might expect groups
with, for instance, a female minority to func-
tion better than groups with a male minor-
ity. Whether or not this is the case needs to
be tested, but the point is that simple disper-
sion models do not capture these more sub-
tle effects because they treat a group with a
male minority and a group with a compara-
ble female minority (e.g., eight men and two
women versus two men and eight women)
as equally diverse (cf. Harrison & Klein
Another consideration is that once a given
background or perspective is represented by
one or two members (e.g., members with
a particular functional background within a
cross-functional team), adding additional rep-
resentatives of this background or perspec-
tive to the group might add relatively less
to the group’s potential to perform well—
i.e., sometimes diversity may be more a di-
chotomy (present versus absent) than a mat-
ter of degree. The effects of diversity may
also be contingent on the mean level of the
diversity dimension, as illustrated in Barsade
et al.’s (2000) finding that the relationship of
top management team diversity in positive af-
fect with group conflict and cooperation was
522 van Knippenberg
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
contingent on the mean level of positive affect
in the team.
Such complex conceptualizations of diver-
sity are acknowledged more in theoretical
analyses than in empirical research, but they
do seem to have the potential to enrich our un-
derstanding of the effects of diversity, and re-
search following up on some of these notions
should be highly worthwhile. In this respect,
it is important to note that organizational sur-
veys typically do not tap into the whole range
of potential group compositions (e.g., work
groups dominated by ethnic minorities tend
to be rare in most samples), and more sophis-
ticated conceptualizations of diversity might
suggest that this poses a threat to the con-
clusions that may be reached on the basis of
studies relying on more traditional dispersion
models (Harrison & Klein 2005).
Faultlines: Interacting Dimensions of
Traditionally, diversity research has focused
on the effects of different dimensions of di-
versity in isolation or in additive models, not
taking into account the possibility that the
effects of a dimension of diversity may be
contingent on diversity on other dimensions.
Research on the salience of social categoriza-
tions (Oakes et al. 1994, Turner et al. 1987)
and cross-categorization (Brewer 1995, Crisp
et al. 2002) suggests that the correlation be-
tween different dimensions of differentiation
influences the likelihood that diversity elicits
subcategorization processes. It might there-
fore be better to think of work group diversity
as an interaction of differences on different
dimensions than to look only at the additive
effects of dimensions of diversity.
Lau & Murnighan (1998) coined the term
“faultlines” to refer to combinations of corre-
lated dimensions of diversity that yield a clear
basis for differentiation between subgroups
(i.e., implying both between-group differ-
ences and within-group similarity; Turner
et al. 1987). A group composition in which all
the men are relatively old and all the women
Faultlines: when
positions on
different dimensions
of diversity are
correlated, the
combination of
diversity on these
dimensions may
suggest a clear
distinction between
are relatively young, for example, is more
likely to elicit subcategorization than is a com-
position in which gender and age are unre-
lated. The stronger the diversity faultline, the
more likely subcategorizations should be to
arise, and the greater the chance of disrup-
tions of group functioning.
In support of this proposition, Li &
Hambrick (2005) found that a faultline index
was negatively related to self-rated group per-
formance and that this relationship was me-
diated by relational conflict and behavioral
integration (cf. social integration). Sawyer
et al. (2005) compared informationally diverse
decision-making groups that were ethnically
homogeneous (all Caucasian) with groups that
had an ethnic minority member present who
was either also in the informational minority
(i.e., a faultline) or in the informational major-
ity (i.e., crosscutting informational and eth-
nic diversity), and reported that groups with
crosscutting dimensions of diversity outper-
formed homogeneous and faultline groups. In
a similar vein, Homan & van Knippenberg
(2003) showed that cross-categorization leads
to a more favorable group process than does
a faultline dividing the group equally (also see
Phillips et al. 2004). More-indirect evidence
of the disruptive influence of faultlines was
provided by Lau & Murnighan (2005), who
found that faultlines are associated with less
positive relationships of communication be-
tween subgroups with learning, psychological
safety, group satisfaction, and expected group
The evidence is less consistent, how-
ever, than one would like it to be. Lau &
Murnighan (2005) also observed that fault-
lines were associated with lower relational
conflict, and higher satisfaction and psycho-
logical safety. Sawyer et al. (2005) did not
observe differences between faultline and ho-
mogeneous groups, and Phillips et al. (2004)
found that a faultline involving a single dis-
similar member resulted in better decision-
making performance than did a situation in
which single-member dissimilarity and infor-
mational differences crosscut each other.
Work Group Diversity 523
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
The possibility that faultlines have a curvi-
linear relationship with outcomes does not ex-
plain the above inconsistencies, but it hints
at the possibility that the effects of fault-
lines are less straightforward than initially
conceived. Both Gibson & Vermeulen (2003)
and Thatcher et al. (2003) found curvilin-
ear relationships in which moderate faultlines
were associated with outcomes that were more
positive (team learning, morale, performance,
and reduced conflict). However, both studies
used faultline measures where moderate fault-
lines might also be labeled moderate cross-
categorization, and it is unclear to what extent
these findings point to the benefits of mod-
erate faultlines (i.e., eliciting subgroup cate-
gorization) or of crosscutting dimensions of
diversity (i.e., diversity without associated
subgroup salience).
Earley & Mosakowski (2000) showed that
the faultline notion could also be applied
to a single dimension of diversity when the
dimension has multiple nominal categories.
They found that teams with members from
two different countries showed greater ev-
idence of subcategorization and performed
more poorly than did both nationality-
homogeneous teams and teams that consisted
of members from several different coun-
tries (i.e., the two-nationality composition ar-
guably represents a stronger faultline).
The faultline and cross-categorization
concepts have added value in terms of ex-
plaining diversity effects, but the relation-
ship between faultlines and outcomes is not
clear-cut. In part, this may reflect problems
with the operationalization of faultlines. It
might be worthwhile, for instance, to con-
sider the possibility that there are asymme-
tries in the effects of faultlines that are not
captured by current faultline measures. For
example, along similar lines as discussed in the
previous section, a faultline between a male
Caucasian minority and a female Asian ma-
jority might affect group functioning differ-
ently than a faultline between a male Cau-
casian majority and a female Asian minority.
In part, the observed inconsistency in find-
ings may also reflect a need to focus on the
contingencies of the effects of faultlines (cf.
Gibson & Vermeulen 2003) because, for in-
stance, salient categorizations only under cer-
tain circumstances translate into disruptive in-
tergroup biases (van Knippenberg et al. 2004).
And clearly, research actually assessing the
categorization processes implied by faultline
theory (cf. Earley & Mosakowski 2000) is
needed to explicitly test predictions about the
assumed processes.
An important issue is that not much clear
evidence exists for the processes implied
by the social categorization (and similarity/
attraction) and information/decision-making
perspectives identified by Williams &
O’Reilly (1998). This is due in part to the
fact that many studies did not include process
measures. A complicating factor in this re-
spect is that neither the social categorization
perspective on work group diversity nor the
information/decision-making perspective
represents a clearly articulated theoretical
framework; rather, the perspectives are more
like loosely defined applications of social
categorization theories and notions about
group information processing and decision
In the following sections, we address
the empirical evidence for the processes
underlying the effects of work group di-
versity and the factors that moderate these
processes. Most of the evidence in diversity
research is not easily and unambiguously
interpreted in terms of social categorization
and information/decision-making processes,
however, and a substantial part of our discus-
sion concerns studies that may be consistent
(to a greater or lesser extent) with the social
categorization and information/decision-
making perspectives without providing direct
evidence to that effect. In that respect,
we identify three (sets of) factors that are
524 van Knippenberg
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
receiving increased research attention as
moderators of the effects of diversity: inter-
dependence, time, and diversity mind-sets.
Social Categorization Processes
Diversity research has typically applied in-
sights from research in social categorization
and intergroup relations in a straightforward
way, predicting that differences between peo-
ple may elicit social categorization processes
(stereotypic perceptions of dissimilar others,
subgroup formation, intergroup biases) that
disrupt group functioning and lower affec-
tive/evaluative responses to the group. In sup-
port of this analysis, there is evidence that
diversity may elicit subcategorization. Ear-
ley & Mosakowski (2000) assessed subgroup
categorization and common group identity
(although the latter measure arguably re-
flects cohesiveness more than social catego-
rization) and found that groups with stronger
faultlines had a stronger sense of subgroups
and a weaker common identity. Moreover,
they found evidence that common identity
mediated the relationship between faultlines
and satisfaction (but not performance). These
findings were not replicated in a second study,
Research on relational demography also
yields evidence for social categorization pro-
cesses, although this should be treated more
carefully because, as noted above, individual
dissimilarity does not necessarily reflect group
diversity. Chattopadhyay et al. (2004b) found
that dissimilarity to the work group lowered
individuals’ self-categorization as a member
of the group. Randel (2002) found that group
gender composition affected the salience of
male group members’ gender identity (cf.
Mehra et al. 1998) and that identity salience
moderated the relationship between gender
composition and relational conflict (i.e., sug-
gesting a translation of categorization into in-
tergroup bias; also see Randel & Jaussi 2003).
Evidence that diversity affects social catego-
rization thus is quite modest, and it would
seem important for future research to estab-
lish the validity of this basic tenet of the so-
cial categorization perspective on work group
A second question is whether there is ev-
idence of an association of work group di-
versity with intergroup bias in perceptions,
evaluations, and social interaction. Social cat-
egorization processes are presumed to engen-
der more favorable attitudes toward ingroup
than outgroup others, more trust, more will-
ingness to cooperate, and generally smoother
interaction with ingroup than with outgroup
others. In line with this argument, Chatman
& Flynn (2001) found that demographic di-
versity was associated with lower self-rated
team cooperativeness. Consistent with the
idea that computer-mediated interaction re-
moves social categorization cues (Sproull &
Kiesler 1986), Bhappu et al. (1997) found
that computer-mediated communication in
gender-diverse groups showed fewer signs of
intergroup bias (operationalized as differen-
tial attention to same-gender versus other-
gender communication) than did face-to-face
communication. Chattopadhyay (1999) ob-
served in a study of relational demography
that trust in peers mediated the negative rela-
tionship between individual dissimilarity and
organizational citizenship behavior (see also
Chattopadhyay & George 2001). None of
these studies presented direct evidence of so-
cial categorization processes, however, so cau-
tion is in order in concluding that these studies
provide evidence of intergroup bias.
Research focusing on social/behavioral
integration and relational conflict similarly
yields evidence that is consistent with a social
categorization interpretation. Randel’s (2002)
findings for the role of identity salience in re-
lational conflict probably provide the most
persuasive evidence of social categorization
disrupting group process in diverse work
groups. Other studies offer evidence that is
more indirect because they included no di-
rect measure of categorization (e.g., the asso-
ciation observed between diversity faultlines
and behavioral integration by Li & Hambrick
2005). Evidence of negative relationships
Work Group Diversity 525
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
between diversity and social integration
(Harrison et al. 1998, 2002), and positive re-
lationships between diversity and relational
conflict (Pelled et al. 1999) that also medi-
ated the relationship with outcomes (Bayazit
& Mannix 2003, Jehn et al. 1999, Knight et al.
1999, Mohammed & Angell 2004), is consis-
tent with the social categorization prediction.
However, it does not prove that these relation-
ships follow from social categorization pro-
cesses rather than from other factors associ-
ated with diversity.
Complicating matters, evidence also links
diversity to higher social integration and
group identification (identification reflects
self-categorization), and lower relational con-
flict (Polzer et al. 2002; cf. Swann et al. 2003).
Building on research by Swann and colleagues
on self-verification (being seen by others as
one sees oneself; for an overview, see Swann
et al. 2004), Polzer et al. (2002) tested interac-
tions between congruence of group members’
self-views and the views other group mem-
bers have of them (arguably a proxy for self-
verification) and demographic and functional
diversity. They found that whereas higher di-
versity tended to be associated with more neg-
ative outcome when congruence was low, it
actually tended to be associated with more
positive outcome when congruence was high.
For the social categorization perspective to
account for the effects of diversity adequately,
it would thus seem that it should also be able to
incorporate positive relationships of diversity
with group identification and group interac-
tion (cf. van Knippenberg & Haslam 2003).
A number of studies thus yield results that
are consistent with a social categorization
analysis of the effects of work group diversity.
Surprisingly few studies, however, directly as-
sessed social categorization processes, and re-
sults are inconsistent enough to raise doubts
about the extent to which social categoriza-
tion processes are in operation. Moreover,
without supporting process evidence, some of
the negative relationships between diversity
and group process may also be interpreted
as reflecting the consequences of misunder-
standing and disagreement per se (i.e., a more
dysfunctional side of information/decision-
making processes) rather than social cate-
gorization. Empirical attention to the actual
categorization processes therefore would be
warranted to substantiate the social catego-
rization analysis of work group diversity.
It might also be useful to extend social cat-
egorization (and similarity/attraction) analy-
ses with insights from the study of social net-
works in organizations (Brass et al. 2004).
Social network analysis has attempted to cap-
ture relationships between group members in
terms of the strength and nature of their ties,
and has proven useful in capturing the influ-
ence of diversity on the relationships formed
by group members (Klein et al. 2004, Reagans
& Zuckerman 2001). Network analysis may
help to paint a more elaborate picture of
the social relations within a work group that
moves beyond the relatively simple notion of
a split in subgroups and thus enable a more
fine-grained analysis of social categorization
processes. Moreover, it may also prove useful
in capturing the external (i.e., outside of the
work group) network of group members as it
may be affected by diversity (Reagans et al.
Models that are more sophisticated and
that focus on the contingencies of sub-
categorization and intergroup bias (van
Knippenberg et al. 2004) also seem in or-
der. In this respect, research on the salience
of social categorizations (Oakes et al. 1994,
Turner et al. 1987) shows that there is more
to social categorization than just differences
between people. As reflected in the notion
of diversity faultlines, some combinations of
differences (i.e., those that result in high
between-group differences and within-group
similarities) are more likely to elicit subcate-
gorizations than are others. In this sense, di-
versity is also context: In more-diverse orga-
nizations, work group diversity may be less
salient (cf. Martins et al. 2003; also see Brief
et al. 2005, Joshi et al. 2005).
In addition, for diversity to elicit a particu-
lar categorization, the categorization also has
526 van Knippenberg
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
to make sense within individuals’ psycholog-
ical frame of reference (an issue that diver-
sity research so far has hardly touched upon):
In order to become salient, a categorization
should not only capture similarities and dif-
ferences between people, but should also be
meaningful to the individual (Turner et al.
1987). Moreover, as van Knippenberg et al.
(2004) argue, it is intergroup bias (favoring
one’s own subgroup) that may disrupt group
process and not categorization per se (i.e., the
perception of subgroups), and categorization
only translates into intergroup bias under cer-
tain circumstances. Thus, diversity research
might benefit from a more fine-grained anal-
ysis of the factors that elicit social categoriza-
tion as well as of the factors that translate so-
cial categorization into intergroup bias.
At the core of the information/decision-
making perspectives lies the notion that work
group diversity may be associated with dif-
ferences in information, knowledge, and per-
spectives, and that this diversity may bene-
fit group performance. These informational
differences are not limited to what are often
seen as informational or job-relevant dimen-
sions of diversity (Tsui & O’Reilly 1989, van
Knippenberg et al. 2004). As van Knippen-
berg et al. (2004) outline, this implies that at
the core of the positive effects of diversity em-
phasized in the information/decision-making
perspective lies elaboration of task-relevant
information—the group-level exchange, pro-
cessing, and integration of diverse informa-
tion and perspectives (cf. Hinsz et al. 1997). In
line with this analysis, Earley & Mosakowski
(2000) found that a measure of team commu-
nication that seems to be closely aligned with
this notion of elaboration mediated the rela-
tionship of group diversity and performance
(although this finding was not replicated in a
second study), and Dahlin et al. (2005) found
that (moderate) diversity was associated with
greater information use.
Related to the proposed role of elabora-
tion of task-relevant information is the no-
tion that divergent viewpoints may stimu-
late team reflexivity. Team reflexivity refers to
the team’s careful consideration and discus-
sion of its functioning and is proposed to re-
sult in team learning and improved team per-
formance (Schippers et al. 2005; West 1996,
2002). Just as diversity may stimulate elabo-
ration of task-relevant information, divergent
perspectives on the task that may be associated
with diversity may invite a team to reflect on
its own functioning. In support of this propo-
sition, Schippers et al. (2003) found that team
reflexivity mediated the (moderated) relation-
ship between diversity and team performance,
commitment, and satisfaction. Providing fur-
ther support for this perspective, Gibson &
Vermeulen (2003) found that diversity may be
positively related to team learning behavior
(cf. reflexivity), and Van der Vegt & Bunder-
son (2005) found that team learning behavior
partly mediated the relationship between ex-
pertise diversity and team performance.
A number of researchers working from a
related perspective have pointed to the role
of task conflict—disagreements about the task
performed ( Jehn et al. 1999, Lovelace et al.
2001, Pelled et al. 1999). Diversity is pro-
posed to have the potential to stimulate task
conflict through its associated differences in
viewpoints, ideas, and opinions, and task con-
flict is argued to engender more careful con-
sideration of the task at hand. Consistent with
this notion, Jehn et al. (1999) found that task
conflict mediated the positive relationship be-
tween informational diversity and group per-
formance. Inconsistent with this reasoning,
however, they also found that perceived value
diversity positively correlated with task con-
flict (cf. Jehn & Mannix 2001), while per-
ceived value diversity was negatively related
to performance. Pelled et al. (1999) also
found evidence that functional background
diversity was positively related to task con-
flict (as do Lovelace et al. 2001), but found
no relationship between diversity and group
Work Group Diversity 527
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
Raising further doubts about the proposed
role of task conflict, the notion that task
conflict mediates the positive influence of
diversity on group performance is at odds
with the meta-analytic finding that task con-
flict is negatively related to group perfor-
mance (De Dreu & Weingart 2003). Indeed,
as van Knippenberg et al. (2004) argue, al-
though task conflict might engender elabo-
ration of task-relevant information and thus
foster group performance under certain con-
ditions (cf. Lovelace et al. 2001), task conflict
does not necessarily do so, nor is task conflict
a prerequisite for elaboration of task-relevant
information to occur. Accordingly, it may be
the elaboration of task-relevant information
per se and not task conflict that drives the pos-
itive effects of diversity, but studies assessing
both task conflict and group-level information
processing are required to address this issue.
If positive effects of diversity on perfor-
mance flow from group information pro-
cessing, then the positive effects of diversity
should be more likely on tasks with stronger
information-processing and/or decision-
making requirements (van Knippenberg
et al. 2004). In support of this proposition,
Jehn et al. (1999) found that informational
diversity was more positively related to
group performance on less-routine tasks, and
Bowers et al.’s (2000) meta-analysis showed
that diversity was positively related to group
performance on more complex tasks but was
negatively related on simpler tasks. Although
this is no evidence for the actual elaboration
of information assumed to underlie this
moderating effect, these findings are consis-
tent with the information/decision-making
There thus is some evidence for the pro-
cesses implied in the information/decision-
making perspective, although studies assess-
ing these processes are generally somewhat
lacking. Moreover, there seems to be some
controversy about the role of task conflict. It
therefore seems that diversity research may
benefit from more theoretical as well as em-
pirical attention to the information process-
ing and decision-making processes that are
presumed to drive the positive effects of di-
versity. In addition, in view of the lack of
support for an overall positive effect of diver-
sity, theoretical models of the contingencies
of information/decision-making processes are
required. Research on social information pro-
cessing, for instance, suggests that processing
motivation and ability are key determinants of
in-depth processing of information (Chaiken
& Trope 1999). Motivation and ability have
received little attention in diversity research,
yet they potentially also are important deter-
minants of groups’ use of their diversity of in-
formation and perspectives (van Knippenberg
et al. 2004).
Social Categorization Processes As
Moderator of Information/
Decision-Making Processes
The social categorization perspective and
the information/decision-making perspective
have largely developed along separate lines,
and there are few studies considering the in-
teraction between social categorization and
information/decision-making processes. Yet,
because intergroup bias may render indi-
viduals less open to communication from
dissimilar others (van Knippenberg 1999), in-
tergroup bias engendered by diversity may
disrupt group information processing and
thus stand in the way of realizing the potential
benefits of diversity (van Knippenberg et al.
Consistent with this proposition, Jehn
et al. (1999) found that higher perceived value
diversity and demographic diversity were as-
sociated with less-positive relationships be-
tween informational diversity and indicators
of group performance. In a similar vein,
Phillips et al.’s (2004) finding that groups that
were split equally along a faultline dealt less
successfully with their informational diver-
sity is consistent with this argument (also see
Homan & van Knippenberg 2003). Neither
study includes measures of social categoriza-
tion processes, though, so some caution is
528 van Knippenberg
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
in order in attributing these findings to the
disruptive influence of social categorization
processes. Lau & Murnighan’s (2005) obser-
vation that faultlines disrupted the positive
relationship between intersubgroup commu-
nication (cf. Bhappu et al. 1997) and posi-
tive group outcomes is also in line with this
argument. Their finding that faultlines were
also associated with less relational conflict
and greater psychological safety and satisfac-
tion raises some doubts about a straightfor-
ward social categorization interpretation of
these findings, however. Although the avail-
able evidence thus seems reasonably consis-
tent with the proposition that diversity may
disrupt group information processing, the ev-
idence for the actual operation of social cate-
gorization and information/decision-making
processes is largely missing.
A possibility that has received less atten-
tion is that social categorization processes may
also stimulate group information processing.
A line of research by Phillips and colleagues
hints at this possibility, suggesting that in-
formationally diverse groups that contain a
member who is dissimilar to the other mem-
bers of the group are more likely to make
effective use of their informational diversity
than are more-homogeneous groups, presum-
ably because dissimilarity alerts the group to
potential associated differences in informa-
tion (Phillips 2003; Phillips et al. 2004, 2005;
Phillips & Loyd 2005). However, because
measures of categorization are missing from
these studies, it is not clear whether these ef-
fects can be attributed to social categorization
Either way, the work by Phillips and col-
leagues raises the following questions: Under
which conditions is greater diversity benefi-
cial to a group’s use of distributed information,
and under which conditions is diversity more
likely to disrupt group information process-
ing? As Phillips et al. (2004) show, whether
social categorization processes point to a solo
minority member or to equal-sized subgroups
may be one factor (but see Sawyer et al. 2005),
but a more comprehensive account of the
contingencies of these effects awaits future
Cooperation and Interdependence
Group members may depend to a greater or
lesser extent on each other for task perfor-
mance (i.e., task interdependence; Wageman
1995) and for outcomes that may flow
from task performance (i.e., outcome in-
terdependence; Wageman 1995). Moreover,
this interdependence may be more coop-
erative or competitive in nature (i.e., own
and others’ interests may align or conflict).
A number of researchers have proposed
that the degree and nature of interdepen-
dence between group members moderates
the relationship between work group diver-
sity and outcomes. Such a moderating role
is consistent with both the social catego-
rization and the information/decision-making
perspective. From a social categorization
perspective, higher, more cooperative inter-
dependence between group members may fo-
cus group members on the common group
identity and distract from subgroup cate-
gorizations (Gaertner & Dovidio 2000). In
addition, interdependence may also facili-
tate intergroup contact and be conducive to
more harmonious relations between different
groups (Pettigrew 1998). At the same time, the
need to collaborate may also set the stage for
group information processing because it may
invite information exchange and discussion.
From both perspectives, cooperative interde-
pendence would thus be expected to be asso-
ciated with effects of diversity that are more
In support of this notion, Chatman et al.
(1998; also see Chatman & Spataro 2005)
in a study of relational demography showed
that in groups with collectivistic norms em-
phasizing cooperation (versus individualistic
norms emphasizing competition and indepen-
dence), dissimilarity is more positively asso-
ciated with group process and performance.
Mohammed & Angell (2004) found that gen-
der diversity was associated with relational
Work Group Diversity 529
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
conflict only when group members were less
concerned with cooperative relations, and that
time urgency (an individual difference vari-
able) diversity was positively related to re-
lational conflict when team process was low
rather than high in terms of cooperation, com-
munication, and task-oriented leadership. It
should be noted, however, that they did not
obtain similar relationships for ethnic diver-
sity and extraversion diversity, and that they
observed these relationships at time 1 but
not at time 2. Schippers et al. (2003) re-
ported that diversity was positively related
to team reflexivity (i.e., arguably an indicator
of information/decision processes), self-rated
group performance, and satisfaction for high-
outcome interdependence and negatively for
low-outcome interdependence. Jehn et al.
(1999) observed that demographic diversity
was more positively related to satisfaction and
commitment when task interdependence was
higher. Van der Vegt & Janssen (2003) found
that diversity was only positively related to
innovative behavior when both task and out-
come interdependence were high, which sug-
gests that it may be worthwhile to consider
task and outcome interdependence in combi-
Whereas these studies are generally con-
sistent with the notion that greater coopera-
tive interdependence is associated with more
positive relationships between diversity and
outcomes, two studies suggest that the is-
sue may be more complex and that interde-
pendence may be a double-edged sword. Ely
(2004) found that tenure and age diversity in-
teracted with a team process measure includ-
ing cooperation, such that higher scores were
associated with more negative relationships
between diversity and performance. Jehn &
Bezrukova (2004) observed that work group
cultures that were more cooperative were as-
sociated with more positive relationships be-
tween diversity and performance for some di-
mensions of diversity but with more negative
relationships for another dimension, while
group culture did not affect this relationship
for yet other dimensions of diversity.
These findings suggest that the role of co-
operation and interdependence may be more
complex than is currently conceived, although
it is also possible that more mundane expla-
nations in terms of differences in measure-
ment and specific conceptualizations would
account for some of these observations. Either
way, it would be valuable if future research
would focus more on the processes underly-
ing the effects of cooperation and interde-
pendence and develop more-comprehensive
accounts of the role of cooperation and inter-
dependence vis-
a-vis social categorization and
information/decision-making perspectives on
the effects of work group diversity.
Time/Team Tenure
Harrison and colleagues in particular have
advanced the idea that the effects of diver-
sity may change over time as groups gain ex-
tended experience working with each other
(Harrison et al. 1998, 2002). Extended tenure
may lead group members to find out that ini-
tial stereotype-based impressions about fel-
low group members were wrong (cf. Pettigrew
1998), thus attenuating the effects of social
categorization processes. At the same time,
extended tenure may also bring to the sur-
face more hidden differences that may neg-
atively affect group process. Extended team
tenure may thus be associated with less neg-
ative as well as more negative effects of di-
versity. Harrison et al. (1998) link the first
to surface-level demographic dimensions of
diversity and the second to deep-level, more
hidden dimensions of diversity.
Consistent with Harrison et al.’s (1998)
proposition, a number of studies yield evi-
dence that associations between demographic
diversity and outcomes may become less neg-
ative over time (Chatman & Flynn 2001;
Harrison et al. 1998, 2002; Pelled et al. 1999;
Watson et al. 1993; cf. Earley & Mosakowski
2000, Sacco & Schmitt 2005), and that the as-
sociations between more hidden dimensions
of diversity and outcomes may become more
negative over time (Harrison et al. 1998,
530 van Knippenberg
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
2002). However, other studies yield evidence
inconsistent with Harrison et al.’s (1998)
proposition. Watson et al. (1998) found that
demographic diversity was more negatively
related to outcomes over time. Schippers et al.
(2003) observed that more hidden dimensions
of diversity were more strongly (and posi-
tively) related to group process and perfor-
mance when team tenure was low rather than
high. Mohammed & Angell (2004) found no
difference between the correlates of surface-
level and deep-level diversity between two
measurement points.
Aside from the fact that these inconsistent
findings corroborate our earlier claim that ty-
pologies of diversity do not explain the differ-
ential effects of diversity, these findings un-
derscore that time/team tenure is a factor that
may moderate the effects of diversity. Models
that are more elaborate would help to pre-
dict the exact nature of this moderating ef-
fect, however. In this respect, future research
may also take into account the possibility that
groups need extended tenure to benefit from
differences—that is, that the positive effects
of diversity need some time to emerge (van
Knippenberg et al. 2004).
Diversity Mind-Sets
The notion that people prefer to work with
similar others in homogeneous groups fea-
tures prominently in accounts of the effects
of diversity. Perhaps somewhat surprisingly
then, only a limited number of studies have
actually focused on what people think about
diversity, and on the possibility that people’s
ideas about diversity may influence the ef-
fects of diversity. This seems to be chang-
ing. On the individual level of analysis, some
researchers have examined attitudes toward
diversity and beliefs about the value of di-
versity (Hostager & De Meuse 2002, Strauss
et al. 2003, van Knippenberg & Haslam 2003).
On the group and organizational levels of
analysis, attempts have been made to assess
shared cognition about diversity in the form
of diversity climates, cultures, or perspec-
tives (Chen & Eastman 1997, Ely & Thomas
2001, Kossek & Zonia 1993, Mor Barak
et al. 1998). Although some of these studies
merely focus on evaluations of diversity, oth-
ers also try to capture people’s understanding
of how to deal with diversity (cf. mental mod-
els; Ely & Thomas 2001, van Ginkel & van
Knippenberg 2003). To capture these partly
overlapping approaches to people’s diversity
cognitions, van Knippenberg et al. (2005) pro-
posed the label “diversity mind-sets,” which
refers to people’s understanding of how di-
versity may affect their work group or organi-
zation, their understanding of the appropriate
way to deal with diversity, and their associated
evaluations of diversity.
The general idea driving research on what
may be summarized as diversity mind-sets is
that the effects of diversity should be more
positive in contexts where individuals, groups,
and organizations have more favorable beliefs
about and attitudes toward diversity, are more
focused on harvesting the benefits of diver-
sity, and have a better understanding of how to
realize these benefits. Diversity mind-sets fa-
voring diversity may thus be expected to pre-
vent intergroup bias as well as to stimulate
the integration of diverse information, view-
points, and perspectives (Chen & Eastman
1997, Ely & Thomas 2001, van Knippenberg
& Haslam 2003). That is, diversity mind-
sets may moderate social categorization as
well as information/decision-making pro-
cesses. Rather than testing this moderating
role, however, research has largely concen-
trated on developing measures of aspects
of diversity mind-sets and studying their
antecedents (Hostager & De Meuse 2002,
Kossek & Zonia 1993, Mor Barak et al. 1998,
Roberson et al. 2001, Strauss et al. 2003).
Even so, there is some evidence that di-
versity mind-sets favoring diversity and de-
scribing ways of realizing the benefits of
diversity may be associated with effects of
diversity that are more positive. R.J. Ely &
D.A. Thomas (manuscript submitted; also see
Ely & Thomas 2001) show that racial diver-
sity is more positively related to performance
Work Group Diversity 531
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
at bank branches that are focused on learn-
ing from diversity (cf. Richard et al. 2003).
Homan et al. (2004) show that gender-diverse
decision-making groups are more likely to
use their informational diversity when they
believe in the value of diversity. van Ginkel
& van Knippenberg (2003) find that groups
reach higher-quality decisions when they have
a shared understanding of how to deal with
their informational diversity, and van Knip-
penberg et al. (2003) report more positive re-
lationships between diversity and identifica-
tion for group members who believe more in
the value of diversity. Thus, although research
on diversity mind-sets is still at an embryonic
stage, it does seem to have promise.
From notions about the role of group infor-
mation processing follows the idea that the
effects of diversity might be curvilinear. To
benefit from the diversity of information, ex-
pertise, and perspectives that may be associ-
ated with dimensions of differentiation, group
members should be able to understand and
integrate the contributions of dissimilar oth-
ers. As group members differ more in back-
ground, experience, and expertise, however,
it becomes more likely that they do not share
a common frame of reference (i.e., “speak
the same language”) that allows in-depth un-
derstanding of diverse others’ input. Thus,
the potentially positive effects of diversity on
group performance may only obtain up to a
certain level of diversity, beyond which the
lack of a common frame of reference may get
in the way of fully appreciating all group mem-
bers’ contributions (van Knippenberg et al.
In support of this proposition, researchers
have reported evidence of curvilinear rela-
tionships in which moderate diversity is as-
sociated with more positive outcomes than is
lower as well as higher diversity (Brodbeck
2003; Dahlin et al. 2005; V. Gonzalez-Roma,
M.A. West, & C. Borrill, manuscript submit-
ted; Richard et al. 2004). Contrary to this
proposition, however, Richard et al. (2004)
and Dahlin et al. (2005) also find evidence
for the opposite curvilinear relationship, as do
Gibson & Vermeulen (2003). Further com-
plicating matters, Van der Vegt & Bunderson
(2005) found, contingent on level of team
commitment, both U-shaped (high commit-
ment) and inverted U-shaped (low commit-
ment) relationships for the association be-
tween expertise diversity and team learning
and performance.
The evidence for curvilinear effects of di-
versity thus is far from straightforward. Yet,
echoing similar conclusions in the previous
section, enough indications exist to warrant a
closer look at curvilinear relationships in addi-
tion to linear relationships (also see the curvi-
linear effects observed for diversity faultlines).
This seems especially important because the
notion of curvilinear relationships also hints
at the possibility that some of the inconsistent
findings in diversity research might be due to
restriction of range effects. That is, contin-
gent on which part of the range is sampled,
a curvilinear relationship in the population
might yield a positive, a null, or a negative
relationship between diversity and outcomes.
How much progress has research in orga-
nizational diversity made since Williams &
O’Reilly (1998) assessed the state of the art?
Clearly, with the increased attention to more
complex conceptualizations of diversity, to the
processes mediating the effects of work group
diversity, and to the contingencies of these
processes, our current understanding of the
effects of work group diversity on group pro-
cess and performance goes well beyond the
1998 state of the art. At the same time, how-
ever, much is still unclear about the effects of
diversity. The increasing attention to the me-
diators and moderators of diversity’s effects is
exactly what the field needed, but some im-
portant steps still need to be made.
532 van Knippenberg
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
An important issue is that there seems to
be too much ad hoc theorizing and too little
development of theoretical frameworks that
are more widely applied in the study of di-
versity. Directly related to this is the lack of
empirical attention to the processes that are
presumed to underlie the effects of diversity.
As the current review shows, very few studies
actually capture the range of processes that are
implied by the reasoning underlying hypothe-
ses and that should ideally be assessed for a
proper test of the implied theoretical model.
In combination with the inconsistent evidence
for most propositions, this seriously impairs
the field’s progress. Especially when results do
not confirm predictions, it would seem impor-
tant to know whether diversity did not elicit
the presumed processes or whether these pro-
cesses were not associated with the outcomes
as predicted. Also, when different perspectives
may predict the same outcome through dif-
ferent processes, information about process
would seem essential to theory development.
Clearer articulation of the theoretical models
driving diversity research makes more appar-
ent which processes should be assessed to test
these models, and more consistent applica-
tion of these models will make clearer to what
extent they provide valid accounts of the ef-
fects of diversity. In similar vein, studies of the
moderators of the effects of diversity should
work from clear links with the processes pre-
dicted by these theoretical models and should
assess whether the proposed moderators in-
deed affect these processes.
To establish the causality implied in theo-
retical models of diversity, it is also essential
that survey research is complemented by con-
trolled experiments. An additional advantage
of controlled experiments is that they typically
allow for superior assessment of group pro-
cesses (i.e., by behavioral observation rather
than by relying on self-reports; Weingart
We have identified a number of avenues for
future research that we deem to be particularly
important. The development of more com-
plex conceptualizations of diversity seems an
important step in advancing our understand-
ing of work group diversity. Further applica-
tion of insights from social categorization re-
search about the salience of social categories
would also seem valuable. The emerging at-
tention to diversity faultlines is a promising
step in this direction, but this would also in-
clude research on the role of the extent to
which the categorization makes sense within
the individuals’ psychological frame of refer-
ence and on the role of the wider organiza-
tional and societal context in which the group
is embedded (e.g., the diversity of the orga-
nization as a whole). In similar vein, a focus
on the factors that affect the translation of so-
cial categorization into intergroup bias would
seem important. Diversity research may also
benefit from greater application of insights
from research on social information process-
ing and group decision making to develop
theoretical models of information/decision-
making processes. Finally, exploring possi-
ble curvilinear effects of diversity in addition
to linear effects may lead to important new
insights and contribute to explaining some
of the inconsistencies in diversity research.
Given the value of an understanding of di-
versity at work for organizations and societies
that are becoming ever more diverse, it would
seem important to take on these research chal-
lenges and invest in the continued progress of
this field.
1. Typologies of diversity (most commonly differentiating forms of demographic and
functional diversity) do not explain the differential effects that work group diversity
may have on group process and performance.
Work Group Diversity 533
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
2. Diversity research needs to move beyond conceptualizations and operationalizations
of diversity simply as dispersion on a single dimension of diversity. Rather, it should
conceptualize diversity as a combination of different dimensions of differentiation,
take asymmetries into account, and be open to nonlinear effects.
3. Diversity research should pay more theoretical and empirical attention to the social
categorization and information/decision-making processes presumed to underlie the
effects of diversity on work group performance.
4. Diversity research should pay more attention to the moderators of social categoriza-
tion, intergroup bias, and information/decision-making processes.
We are grateful to Susan Fiske for her guidance and advice and to Jeremy Dawson, Dave
Harrison, Susan Mohammed, Kathy Phillips, Charles O’Reilly, Bill Swann, and Rolf van Dick
for their valuable comments on a previous draft of this article.
Bantel K, Jackson S. 1989. Top management and innovations in banking: Does the composition
of the team make a difference? Strateg. Manage. J. 10:107–24
Barrick MR, Stewart GL, Neubert MJ, Mount MK. 1998. Relating member ability and per-
sonality to work-team processes and team effectiveness. J. Appl. Psychol. 83:377–91
Barry B, Stewart GL. 1997. Composition, process, and performance in self-managed groups:
the role of personality. J. Appl. Psychol. 82:62–78
Barsade SG, Ward AJ, Turner JDF, Sonnenfeld JA. 2000. To your heart’s content: a model of
affective diversity in top management teams. Admin. Sci. Q. 45:802–36
Bayazit M, Mannix EA. 2003. Should I stay or should I go? Predicting team members’ intent
to remain in the team. Small Group Res. 34:290–321
Berscheid E, Reis HT. 1998. Attraction and close relationships. In The Handbook of Social
Psychology, ed. DT Gilbert, ST Fiske, G Lindzey, pp. 193–281. New York: McGraw-Hill
Beyer JM, Chattopadhyay P, George E, Glick WH, Ogilvie DT, Pugliese D. 1997. The
selective perception of managers revisited. Acad. Manage. J. 40:716–37
Bhappu AD, Griffith TL, Northcraft GB. 1997. Media effects and communication bias in
diverse groups. Organ. Behav. Hum. Decis. Process. 70:199–205
Blau PM. 1977. Inequality and Heterogeneity. New York: Free Press
Bowers CA, Pharmer JA, Salas E. 2000. When member homogeneity is needed in work teams.
a meta-analysis. Small Group Res. 31:305–27
Brass DJ, Galaskiewicz J, Greve HR, Tsai W. 2004. Taking stock of networks and organizations:
a multilevel perspective. Acad. Manage. J. 47:795–817
Brewer MB. 1979. In-group bias in the minimal intergroup situation: a cognitive-motivational
analysis. Psychol. Bull. 86:307–24
Brewer MB. 1995. Managing diversity: the role of social identities. In Diversity in Work Teams:
Research Paradigms for a Changing Workplace, ed. S Jackson, MN Ruderman, pp. 47–68.
Washington, DC: Am. Psychol. Assoc.
Brewer MB, Brown RJ. 1998. Intergroup relations. In Handbook of Social Psychology, ed. DT
Gilbert, ST Fiske, pp. 554–94. Boston: McGraw-Hill
534 van Knippenberg
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
Brief AP, Umphress EE, Dietz J, Butz RM, Burrows J, Scholten L. 2005. Community matters:
realistic group conflict theory and the impact of diversity. Acad. Manage. J. 48:830–44
Brodbeck F. 2003. Contradiction as an inhibitor and facilitator of group performance. Presented at
Eur. Cong. Work Organ. Psychol., Lisbon
Bunderson JS, Sutcliffe KM. 2002. Comparing alternative conceptualizations of functional
diversity in management teams: process and performance effects. Acad. Manage. J. 45:875–
Byrne D. 1971. The Attraction Paradigm. New York: Academic
Cannon M, Edmondson A. 2001. Confronting failure: antecedents and consequences of shared
beliefs about failure in organizational work groups. J. Organ. Behav. 22:161–77
Cannon-Bowers JA, Salas E, Converse S. 1993. Shared mental models in expert team decision
making. In Individual and Group Decision Making: Current Directions, ed. NJ Castellan, pp.
221–46. Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum
Chaiken S, Trope Y. 1999. Dual Process Theories in Social Psychology. New York: Guilford
Chan D. 1998. Functional relations among constructs in the same content domain at different
levels of analysis: a typology of composition models. J. Appl. Psychol. 83:234–46
Chatman JA, Flynn FJ. 2001. The influence of demographic heterogeneity on the emergence
and consequences of cooperative norms in work teams. Acad. Manage. J. 44:956–74
Chatman JA, O’Reilly CA. 2004. Asymmetric reactions to work group sex diversity among men
and women. Acad. Manage. J. 47:193–208
Chatman JA, Polzer JT, Barsade SG, Neale MA. 1998. Being different yet feeling similar: the
influence of demographic composition and organizational culture on work processes and
outcomes. Admin. Sci. Q. 43:749–80
Chatman JA, Spataro SE. 2005. Using self-categorization theory to understand relational
demography-based variations in people’s responsiveness to organizational culture. Acad.
Manage. J. 48:321–31
Chattopadhyay P. 1999. Beyond direct and symmetrical effects: the influence of demographic
dissimilarity on organizational citizenship behavior. Acad. Manage. J. 42:273–87
Chattopadhyay P, George E. 2001. Examining the effects of work externalization through the
lens of social identity theory. J. Appl. Psychol. 86:781–88
Chattopadhyay P, George E, Lawrence SA. 2004b. Why does dissimilarity matter? Exploring
self-categorization, self-enhancement, and uncertainty reduction. J. Appl. Psychol. 89:892–
Chattopadhyay P, Glick WH, Miller CC, Huber GP. 1999. Determinants of executive beliefs:
comparing functional conditioning and social influence. Strateg. Manage. J. 20:763–89
Chattopadhyay P, Tluchowska M, George E. 2004a. Identifying the ingroup: a closer look at
the influence of demographic dissimilarity on employee social identity. Acad. Manage. Rev.
Chen CC, Eastman W. 1997. Toward a civic culture for multicultural organizations. J. Appl.
Behav. Sci. 33:454–70
Colquitt JA, Noe RA, Jackson CL. 2002. Justice in teams: antecedents and consequences of
procedural justice climate. Pers. Psychol. 55:83–109
Costa PTJ, McCrae RR. 1992. The NEO-PI-R: Revised Personality Inventory (NEO-PI-R).
Odessa, FL: Assess. Resourc.
Cox T, Lobel S, McLeod P. 1991. Effects of ethnic group cultural differences on cooperative
and competitive behavior on a group task. Acad. Manage. J. 34:827–47
Crisp RJ, Ensari N, Hewstone M, Miller NW. 2002. A dual-route model of crossed cate-
gorization effects. In European Review of Social Psychology, ed. W Stroebe, M Hewstone,
pp. 35–74. Hove, UK/Philadelphia, PA: Psychol. Press
Work Group Diversity 535
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
Dahlin KB, Weingart LR, Hinds PJ. 2005. Team diversity and information use. Acad. Manage.
J. 48:1107–23
De Dreu CKW, Weingart LR. 2003. Task and relationship conflict, team performance, and
team member satisfaction: a meta-analysis. J. Appl. Psychol. 88:741–49
Earley PC, Mosakowski E. 2000. Creating hybrid team cultures: an empirical test of transna-
tional team functioning. Acad. Manage. J. 43:26–49
Ely RJ. 2004. A field study of group diversity, participation in diversity education programs,
and performance. J. Organ. Behav. 25:755–80
Ely RJ, Thomas DA. 2001. Cultural diversity at work: the effects of diversity perspectives on
work group processes and outcomes. Admin. Sci. Q. 46:229–73
Epitropaki O, Martin R. 1999. The impact of relational demography on the quality of leader-
member exchanges and employees’ work attitudes and well-being. J. Occup. Organ. Psychol.
Gaertner SL, Dovidio JF. 2000. Reducing Intergroup Bias. The Common Ingroup Identity Model.
Philadelphia, PA: Psychol. Press
George JM. 1990. Personality, affect and behavior in groups. J. Appl. Psychol. 75:107–16
Gibson C, Vermeulen F. 2003. A healthy divide: subgroups as a stimulus for team learning
behavior. Admin. Sci. Q. 48:202–39
Guzzo RA, Dickson MW. 1996. Teams in organizations: recent research on performance and
effectiveness. Annu. Rev. Psychol. 47:307–38
Provides a
thorough analysis
of different ways to
conceptualize and
diversity, and
outlines how the
adopted may affect
conclusions of
diversity research.
Harrison DA, Klein KJ. 2006. What’s the difference? Diversity constructs as separation,
variety, or disparity in organizations. Acad. Manage. Rev. In press
Harrison DA, Price KH, Bell MP. 1998. Beyond relational demography: time and the effects
of surface- and deep-level diversity on work group cohesion. Acad. Manage. J. 41:96–107
Harrison DA, Price KH, Gavin JH, Florey AT. 2002. Time, teams, and task performance:
changing effects of surface- and deep-level diversity on group functioning. Acad. Manage.
J. 45:1029–45
Harrison DA, Sin HS. 2005. What is diversity and how should it be measured? In Handbook of
Workplace Diversity, ed. AM Konrad, P Prasad, JK Pringle, pp. 191–216. Newbury Park,
CA: Sage
Hinsz VB, Tindale RS, Vollrath DA. 1997. The emerging conceptualization of groups as
information processors. Psychol. Bull. 121:43–64
Hoffman LR, Maier NRF. 1961. Quality and acceptance of problem solutions by members of
homogeneous and heterogeneous groups. J. Abnorm. Soc. Psychol. 62:401–7
Homan AC, van Knippenberg D. 2003. The beneficial effects of cross-categorizing informational and
demographical diversity in groups. Presented at Eur. Cong. Work Organ. Psychol., Lisbon
Homan AC, van Knippenberg D, Van Kleef GA, De Dreu CKW. 2004. Managing group diversity
beliefs to increase performance in diverse teams: Promoting diversity helps! Presented at Annu.
Meet. Soc. Ind. Organ. Psychol., Chicago, IL
Hostager TJ, De Meuse KP. 2002. Assessing the complexity of diversity perceptions: breadth,
depth, and balance. J. Bus. Psychol. 17:189–206
Ilgen DR, Hollenbeck JR, Johnson M, Jundt D. 2005. Teams in organizations: from input-
process-output models to IMOI models. Annu. Rev. Psychol. 56:517–43
Jackson SE. 1992. Team composition in organizational settings: issues in managing an increas-
ingly diverse work force. In Group Process and Productivity, ed. S Worchel, W Wood, JA
Simpson, pp. 136–80. Newbury Park, CA: Sage
Jackson SE, Joshi A. 2004. Diversity in social context: a multi-attribute, multilevel analysis of
team diversity and sales performance. J. Organ. Behav. 25:675–702
536 van Knippenberg
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
Jackson SE, Joshi A, Erhardt NL. 2003. Recent research on team and organizational diversity:
SWOT analysis and implications. J. Manage. 29:801–30
Jehn KA, Bezrukova K. 2004. A field study of group diversity, workgroup context, and perfor-
mance. J. Organ. Behav. 25:703–29
Jehn KA, Chadwick C, Thatcher S. 1997. To agree or not to agree: the effects of value con-
gruence, member diversity, and conflict on workgroup outcomes. Int. J. Confl. Manage.
Jehn KA, Mannix EA. 2001. The dynamic structure of conflict: a longitudinal study of intra-
group conflict and group performance. Acad. Manage. J. 44:238–51
Jehn KA, Northcraft GB, Neale MA. 1999. Why differences make a difference: a field study
of diversity, conflict, and performance in workgroups. Admin. Sci. Q. 44:741–63
Joshi A, Liao H, Jackson SE. 2005. Cross-level effects of workplace diversity on sales perfor-
mance and pay. Acad. Manage. J. In press
Keller RT. 2001. Cross-functional project groups in research and new product development:
diversity, communications, job stress, and outcomes. Acad. Manage. J. 44:547–59
Kerr NL, Tindale RS. 2004. Group performance and decision making. Annu. Rev. Psychol.
Klein KJ, Conn AB, Smith DB, Sorra JS. 2001. Is everyone in agreement? An exploration
of within-group agreement in employee perceptions of the work environment. J. Appl.
Psychol. 86:3–16
Klein KJ, Lim BC, Saltz JL, Mayer DM. 2004. How do they get there? An examination of the
antecedents of centrality in team networks. Acad. Manage. J. 47:952–63
Knight D, Pearce CL, Smith KG, Olian JD, Sims HP, et al. 1999. Top management team
diversity, group process, and strategic consensus. Strateg. Manage. J. 20:445–65
Kossek EE, Zonia SC. 1993. Assessing diversity climate: a field study of reactions to employer
efforts to promote diversity. J. Organ. Behav. 14:61–81
Kozlowski SWJ, Bell BS. 2003. Work groups and teams in organizations. In Handbook of Psy-
chology: Industrial and Organizational Psychology, ed. WC Borman, DR Ilgen, RJ Klimoski,
pp. 333–75. London: Wiley
Introduced the
concept of faultline
to diversity
research in a way
that sparked a
research interest.
Lau DC, Murnighan JK. 1998. Demographic diversity and faultlines: the compositional
dynamics of organizational groups. Acad. Manage. Rev. 23:325–40
Lau DC, Murnighan JK. 2005. Interactions within groups and subgroups: the effects of demo-
graphic faultlines. Acad. Manage. J. 48:645–59
Li J, Hambrick DC. 2005. Factional groups: a new vantage on demographic faultlines, conflict,
and disintegration in work teams. Acad. Manage. J. 48:794–813
Lovelace K, Shapiro DL, Weingart LR. 2001. Maximizing cross-functional new product teams’
innovativeness and constraint adherence: a conflict communications perspective. Acad.
Manage. J. 44:779–93
Martins LL, Milliken FJ, Wiesenfeld BM, Salgado SR. 2003. Racioethnic diversity and group
members’ experiences: the role of the racioethnic diversity of the organizational context.
Group Organ. Manage. 28:75–106
Mathieu JE, Heffner TS, Goodwin GF, Cannon-Bowers JA, Salas E. 2005. Scaling the quality
of teammates’ mental models: equifinality and normative comparisons. J. Organ. Behav.
Mehra A, Kilduff M, Brass DJ. 1998. At the margins: a distinctiveness approach to the social
identity and social networks of underrepresented groups. Acad. Manage. J. 41:441–52
Milliken FJ, Martins LL. 1996. Searching for common threads: understanding the multiple
effects of diversity in organizational groups. Acad. Manage. Rev. 21:402–33
Work Group Diversity 537
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
Mohammed S, Angell LC. 2003. Personality heterogeneity in teams: Which differences make
a difference for team performance? Small Group Res. 34:651–77
Mohammed S, Angell LC. 2004. Surface- and deep-level diversity in workgroups: examining
the moderating effects of team orientation and team process on relationship conflict. J.
Organ. Behav. 25:1015–39
Mohammed S, Ringseis E. 2001. Cognitive diversity and consensus in group decision making:
the role of inputs, processes, and outcomes. Organ. Behav. Hum. Decis. Process. 85:310–35
Mor Barak ME, Cherin DA, Berkman S. 1998. Organizational and personal dimensions of
diversity climate: ethnic and gender differences in employee perceptions. J. Appl. Behav.
Sci. 31:82–104
Mullen B, Copper C. 1994. The relation between group cohesiveness and performance: an
integration. Psychol. Bull. 115:210–27
Murnighan JK, Conlon DE. 1991. The dynamics of intense work groups: a study of British
string quartets. Admin. Sci. Q. 36:165–86
Neuman GA, Wagner SH, Christiansen ND. 1999. The relationship between work-team
personality composition and the job performance of teams. Group Organ. Manage. 24:28–
Neuman GA, Wright J. 1999. Team effectiveness: beyond skills and cognitive ability. J. Appl.
Psychol. 84:376–89
Oakes PJ, Haslam SA, Turner JC. 1994. Stereotyping and Social Reality. Malden, MA: Blackwell
O’Reilly CA, Caldwell DF, Barnett WP. 1989. Work group demography, social integration,
and turnover. Admin. Sci. Q. 34:21–37
Pelled LH, Eisenhardt KM, Xin KR. 1999. Exploring the black box: an analysis of work group
diversity, conflict, and performance. Admin. Sci. Q. 44:1–28
Pettigrew TF. 1998. Intergroup contact theory. Annu. Rev. Psychol. 49:65–85
Phillips KW. 2003. The effects of categorically based expectations on minority influence: the
importance of congruence. Personal. Soc. Psychol. Bull. 29:3–13
Phillips KW, Loyd DL. 2006. When surface and deep-level diversity collide: the effects on
dissenting group members. Organ. Behav. Hum. Decis. Process. 99:143–60
Phillips KW, Mannix EA, Neale MA, Gruenfeld DH. 2004. Diverse groups and information
sharing: the effects of congruent ties. J. Exp. Soc. Psychol. 40:497–510
Phillips KW, Northcraft GB, Neale MA. 2006. Surface-level diversity and information sharing:
When does deep-level diversity help? Group Process. Intergroup Relat. In press
Polzer JT, Milton LP, Swann WBJ. 2002. Capitalizing on diversity: interpersonal congruence
in small work groups. Admin. Sci. Q. 47:296–324
Priem RL, Lyon DW, Dess GG. 1999. Inherent limitations of demographic proxies in top
management team heterogeneity research. J. Manage. 25:935–53
Randel AE. 2002. Identity salience: a moderator of the relationship between group gender
composition and work group conflict. J. Organ. Behav. 23:749–66
Randel AE, Jaussi KS. 2003. Functional background identity, diversity, and individual perfor-
mance in cross-functional teams. Acad. Manage. J. 46:763–74
Reagans R, Zuckerman EW. 2001. Networks, diversity, and productivity: the social capital of
corporate R&D teams. Organ. Sci. 12:502–17
Reagans R, Zuckerman EW, McEvily B. 2004. How to make the team: Social networks versus
demography as criteria for designing effective teams. Admin. Sci. Q. 49:101–33
Rentsch JR, Hall RJ. 1994. Members of great teams think alike: a model of team effectiveness
and schema similarity among team members. In Advances in Interdisciplinary Studies of Work
Teams, ed. MM Beyerlein, DA Johnson, pp. 223–61. Stamford, CT: JAI
538 van Knippenberg
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
Richard O, McMillan A, Chadwick K, Dwyer S. 2003. Employing an innovation strategy in
radically diverse workforce. Group Organ. Manage. 28:107–26
Richard OC, Barnett T, Dwyer S, Chadwick K. 2004. Cultural diversity in management, firm
performance, and the moderating role of entrepreneurial orientation dimensions. Acad.
Manage. J. 47:255–66
Roberson L, Kulik CT, Pepper MB. 2001. Designing effective diversity training: Influence of
group composition and trainee experience. J. Organ. Behav. 22:871–85
Sacco JM, Schmitt N. 2005. A dynamic multilevel model of demographic diversity and misfit
effects. J. Appl. Psychol. 90:203–31
Sawyer JE, Houlette MA, Yeagley EL. 2006. Decision performance and diversity structure:
comparing faultlines in convergent, crosscut, and racially homogeneous groups. Organ.
Behav. Hum. Decis. Process. 99:1–15
Schippers MC, Den Hartog DN, Koopman P. 2006. Reflexivity in teams: a measure and
correlates. Appl. Psychol. Int. Rev. In press
Schippers MC, Den Hartog DN, Koopman PL, Wienk JA. 2003. Diversity and team outcomes:
the moderating effects of outcome interdependence and group longevity and the mediating
effect of reflexivity. J. Organ. Behav. 24:779–802
Schneider B, Salvaggio AN, Subirats M. 2002. Climate strength: a new direction for climate
research. J. Appl. Psychol. 87:220–29
Schneider B, Smith DB, Taylor S, Fleenor J. 1998. Personality and organizations: a test of the
homogeneity of personality hypothesis. J. Appl. Psychol. 83:462–70
Schneider SK, Northcraft GB. 1999. Three social dilemmas of workforce diversity in organi-
zations: a social identity perspective. Hum. Relat. 52:1445–67
Simons T, Pelled LH, Smith KA. 1999. Making use of difference: diversity, debate, and decision
comprehensiveness in top management teams. Acad. Manage. J. 42:662–73
Sørenson JB. 2002. The use and misuse of the coefficient of variation in organizational demog-
raphy research. Sociol. Meth. Res. 30:475–91
Sproull L, Kiesler S. 1986. Reducing social context cues: electronic mail in organizational
communication. Manage. Sci. 32:1492–512
Strauss JP, Connerley ML, Ammermann PA. 2003. The “threat hypothesis,” personality, and
attitudes toward diversity. J. Appl. Behav. Sci. 39:32–52
Swann WB, Polzer JT, Seyle DC, Ko SJ. 2004. Finding value in diversity: verification of
personal and social self-views in diverse groups. Acad. Manage. Rev. 29:9–27
Swann WBJ, Kwan VSY, Polzer JT, Milton LP. 2003. Fostering group identification and
creativity in diverse groups: the role of individuation and self-verification. Personal. Soc.
Psychol. Bull. 29:1396–406
Tajfel H, Turner JC. 1986. The social identity theory of intergroup behavior. In Psychology of
Intergroup Relations, ed. S Worchel, W Austin, pp. 7–24. Chicago: Nelson-Hall
Teachman JD. 1980. Analysis of population diversity. Sociol. Meth. Res. 8:341–62
Thatcher SMB, Jehn KA, Zanutto E. 2003. Cracks in diversity research: the effects of diversity
faultlines on conflict and performance. Group Decis. Negot. 12:217–41
Tindale RS, Smith CM, Thomas LS, Filkins J, Sheffey S. 1996. Shared representations and
asymmetric social influence in small groups. In Understanding Group Behavior: Consensual
Action by Small Groups, ed. E Witte, JH Davis, pp. 81–83. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum
Totterdell P. 2000. Catching moods and hitting runs: mood linkage and subjective performance
in professional sport teams. J. Appl. Psychol. 85:848–59
Totterdell P, Kellett S, Teuchmann K, Briner RB. 1998. Evidence of mood linkage in work
groups. J. Personal. Soc. Psychol. 74:1504–15
Work Group Diversity 539
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
Triandis HC, Kurowski LL, Gelfand MJ. 1994. Workplace diversity. In Handbook of Indus-
trial and Organizational Psychology, Vol. 4, ed. HC Triandis, MD Dunnette, LM Hough,
pp. 769–827. Palo Alto, CA: Consult. Psychol. Press. 2nd ed.
Tsui AS, Egan TD, O’Reilly CA. 1992. Being different: relational demography and organiza-
tional attachment. Admin. Sci. Q. 37:549–79
Tsui AS, O’Reilly CA. 1989. Beyond simple demographic effects: the importance of relational
demography in superior-subordinate dyads. Acad. Manage. J. 32:402–23
Tsui AS, Porter LW, Egan TD. 2002. When both similarities and dissimilarities matter: ex-
tending the concept of relational demography. Hum. Relat. 55:899–929
Turner JC, Hogg MA, Oakes PJ, Reicher SD, Wetherell MS. 1987. Rediscovering the Social
Group: A Self-Categorization Theory. Oxford, UK: Blackwell
Van der Vegt GS, Bunderson JS. 2005. Learning and performance in multidisciplinary teams:
the importance of collective team identification. Acad. Manage. J. 48:532–47
Van der Vegt GS, Janssen O. 2003. Joint impact of interdependence and group diversity on
innovation. J. Manage. 29:29–51
van Ginkel WP, van Knippenberg D. 2003. The role of shared mental models for informational
diversity in group decision-making. Presented at Eur. Assoc. Exp. Soc. Psychol. Small Group
Meet. on Small Group Decision Making: Motiv. Cogn., Amsterdam
van Knippenberg D. 1999. Social identity and persuasion: reconsidering the role of group
membership. In Social Identity and Social Cognition, ed. D Abrams, MA Hogg, pp. 315–31.
Oxford, UK: Blackwell Sci.
Provides an
integrative model
bridging and
extending the
perspective and the
perspective, the
two main traditions
in diversity
van Knippenberg D, De Dreu CKW, Homan AC. 2004. Work group diversity and group
performance: an integrative model and research agenda. J. Appl. Psychol. 89:1008–
van Knippenberg D, Haslam SA. 2003. Realizing the diversity dividend: exploring the subtle
interplay between identity, ideology, and reality. In Social Identity at Work: Developing Theor y
for Organizational Practice, ed. SA Haslam, D van Knippenberg, MJ Platow, N Ellemers,
pp. 61–77. New York/Hove: Psychol. Press
van Knippenberg D, Haslam SA, Platow MJ. 2003. Work group diversity and work group identi-
fication: diversity as an aspect of group identity. Presented at 11th Eur. Congr. Work Organ.
Psychol., Lisbon
van Knippenberg D, van Ginkel WP, Homan AC, Kooij-de Bode HJM. 2005. Diversity mind
sets: a new focus in diversity research. Presented at 12th Eur. Congr. Work Organ. Psychol.,
Van Vianen AEM, De Dreu CKW. 2001. Personality in teams: its relationship to social cohe-
sion, task cohesion, and team performance. Eur. J. Work Organ. Psychol. 10:97–120
Wageman R. 1995. Interdependence and group effectiveness. Admin. Sci. Q. 40:140–80
Wagner GW, Pfeffer J, O’Reilly CA. 1984. Organizational demography and turnover. Admin.
Sci. Q. 29:74–92
Watson W, Johnson L, Merritt D. 1998. Team orientation, self-orientation, and diversity
in task groups: their connection to team performance over time. Group Organ. Manage.
Watson W, Kumar K, Michaelson L. 1993. Cultural diversity’s impact on interaction process
and performance: comparing homogeneous and diverse task groups. Acad. Manage. J.
Webber SS, Donahue LM. 2001. Impact of highly and less job-related diversity on work group
cohesion and performance: a meta-analysis. J. Manage. 27:141–62
Weingart L. 1997. How did they do that? The ways and means of studying group process. Res.
Organ. Behav. 19:189–39
540 van Knippenberg
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
ANRV296-PS58-20 ARI 17 November 2006 1:33
West MA. 1996. Reflexivity and work group effectiveness: a conceptual integration. In Handbook
of Work Group Psychology, ed. MA West, pp. 555–79. Chichester, UK: Wiley
West MA. 2002. Sparkling fountains or stagnant ponds: an integrative model of creativity and
innovation implementation in work groups. Appl. Psychol. Int. Rev. 51:355–87
Williams HM, Me
an LJ. 2004. Measuring gender composition in work groups: a comparison
of existing models. Organ. Res. Methods 7:456–74
Reviews diversity
research up to
Complements the
current article for a
full overview of the
Williams KY, O’Reilly CA. 1998. Demography and diversity in organizations: a review
of 40 years of research. Res. Organ. Behav. 20:77–140
Work Group Diversity 541
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
Contents ARI 8 November 2006 21:2
Annual Review of
Volume 58, 2007
Research on Attention Networks as a Model for the Integration of
Psychological Science
Michael I. Posner and Mary K. Rothbart ppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp1
Cognitive Neuroscience
The Representation of Object Concepts in the Brain
Alex Martin pppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp 25
Depth, Space, and Motion
Perception of Human Motion
Randolph Blake and Maggie Shiffrar ppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp 47
Form Perception (Scene Perception) or Object Recognition
Visual Object Recognition: Do We Know More Now Than We Did 20
Years Ago?
Jessie J. Peissig and Michael J. Tarr pppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp 75
Animal Cognition
Causal Cognition in Human and Nonhuman Animals: A Comparative,
Critical Review
Derek C. Penn and Daniel J. Povinelli ppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp 97
Emotional, Social, and Personality Development
The Development of Coping
Ellen A. Skinner and Melanie J. Zimmer-Gembeck pppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp119
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
Contents ARI 8 November 2006 21:2
Biological and Genetic Processes in Development
The Neurobiology of Stress and Development
Megan Gunnar and Karina Quevedo pppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp145
Development in Societal Context
An Interactionist Perspective on the Socioeconomic Context of
Human Development
Rand D. Conger and M. Brent Donnellan ppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp175
Culture and Mental Health
Race, Race-Based Discrimination, and Health Outcomes Among
African Americans
Vickie M. Mays, Susan D. Cochran, and Namdi W. Barnes ppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp201
Personality Disorders
Assessment and Diagnosis of Personality Disorder: Perennial Issues
and an Emerging Reconceptualization
Lee Anna Clark pppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp227
Social Psychology of Attention, Control, and Automaticity
Social Cognitive Neuroscience: A Review of Core Processes
Matthew D. Lieberman ppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp259
Inference, Person Perception, Attribution
Partitioning the Domain of Social Inference: Dual Mode and Systems
Models and Their Alternatives
Arie W. Kruglanski and Edward Orehek pppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp291
Self and Identity
Motivational and Emotional Aspects of the Self
Mark R. Leary ppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp317
Social Development, Social Personality, Social Motivation,
Social Emotion
Moral Emotions and Moral Behavior
June Price Tangney, Jeff Stuewig, and Debra J. Mashek ppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp345
viii Contents
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
Contents ARI 8 November 2006 21:2
The Experience of Emotion
Lisa Feldman Barrett, Batja Mesquita, Kevin N. Ochsner,
and James J. Gross ppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp373
Attraction and Close Relationships
The Close Relationships of Lesbian and Gay Men
Letitia Anne Peplau and Adam W. Fingerhut ppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp405
Small Groups
Kipling D. Williams ppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp
Personality Processes
The Elaboration of Personal Construct Psychology
Beverly M. Walker and David A. Winter ppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp453
Cross-Country or Regional Comparisons
Cross-Cultural Organizational Behavior
Michele J. Gelfand, Miriam Erez, and Zeynep Aycan pppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp479
Organizational Groups and Teams
Work Group Diversity
Daan van Knippenberg and Michaéla C. Schippers ppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp515
Career Development and Counseling
Work and Vocational Psychology: Theory, Research,
and Applications
Nadya A. Fouad ppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp543
Adjustment to Chronic Diseases and Terminal Illness
Health Psychology: Psychological Adjustment
to Chronic Disease
Annette L. Stanton, Tracey A. Revenson, and Howard Tennen ppppppppppppppppppppppppppp565
Contents ix
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
Contents ARI 8 November 2006 21:2
Research Methodology
Mediation Analysis
David P. MacKinnon, Amanda J. Fairchild, and Matthew S. Fritz ppppppppppppppppppppp593
Analysis of Nonlinear Patterns of Change with Random Coefficient
Robert Cudeck and Jeffrey R. Harring ppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp615
Cumulative Index of Contributing Authors, Volumes 48–58 ppppppppppppppppppppppppppp639
Cumulative Index of Chapter Titles, Volumes 48–58 pppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp644
An online log of corrections to Annual Review of Psychology chapters (if any, 1997 to the
present) may be found at
x Contents
Annu. Rev. Psychol. 2007.58:515-541. Downloaded from
by ERASMUS UNIVERSITEIT on 03/26/08. For personal use only.
... In particular, we discuss the complementarity of a CEO's FTD and the TMT composition. While a CEO's FTD focuses on information about a certain time span (Das 1991(Das , 1987, TMT functional diversity creates diverse function-specific knowledge (Buyl et al. 2011a;Van Knippenberg and Schippers 2007). Having this broad spectrum of different views is particularly useful for a CEO with a longer FTD. ...
... Functional diversity helps such a CEO prepare for crises across different functions and ensures that initial crisis signals are brought to the TMT's notice. While the TMT's functionally diverse knowledge might not be sufficient to overcome a major crisis, it does help stimulate TMT discussions on potential reactions (Duchek et al. 2020), acknowledges diverse viewpoints in advance (Van Knippenberg and Schippers 2007), and fosters cognitive conflict (Bell et al. 2011) in preparation for adversity. Simultaneously, owing to the overarching long-term direction that a CEO with a longer FTD is likely to set for a firm, such a CEO and TMT are likely to find common ground on how to prepare for adversity. ...
Full-text available
Scholars have long investigated the organizational antecedents of resilience, but less is known about CEO-level antecedents. This is surprising, since upper echelons research suggests that a CEO influences major firm decisions. Addressing this gap in our knowledge, we suggest that a CEO prepares for and adjusts to unexpected events in the environment on the basis of the individual future temporal depth (FTD). It reflects the temporal distance into the future that a CEO usually takes into consideration when contemplating future events. Our study of CEOs of 462 S&P500 firms during the Global Financial Crisis and the COVID-19 pandemic shows that a CEO’s longer FTD is associated with less severe economic losses but with a longer recovery time from adversity. If such a CEO can draw on a functionally diverse TMT, the losses are less severe, while prior organizational crisis experience reduces the recovery time. Our paper contributes to organizational resilience research by uncovering its cognitive underpinnings and offering a contextual learning perspective on organizational resilience. We also contribute to upper echelons research by unveiling a CEO’s role in preparing for and adjusting to adversity.
... Today, diversity research has increasingly overcome its initial and overly simplistic conceptions of fixed identity attributes, partly driven by the largely inconsistent findings of its initial research program, which failed to establish any clear-cut linear relationship between diversity attributes and economic benefits (Haas, 2010). While subsequent work has become more aware of the contextual nuances that moderate and mediate the effects of diversity (van Knippenberg and Schippers, 2007;Roh, 2007, 2009), other approaches appear to have come full circle in terms of recognizing the importance of power and status processes for working groups (van Dijk and Van Engen 2013; Ravlin and Thomas 2005;DiTomaso et al., 2007). As van Dijk et al. (2017) rightly emphasize, diversity research needs to take into account that members of different social groups are likely to be perceived and approached differently because of their membership in a given social category […] and, in part as a consequence, may behave differently (p. ...
... While research on diversity primarily operates at the level of teams and small-to medium-sized work groups (Roberson, 2019;van Knippenberg and Schippers, 2007), research on discrimination can target the micro-, meso-and macro-level of society or a combination of these levels of analysis. At the macro-level, the magnitude and persistence of discrimination has been well documented in relation to race and gender in employment, housing, credit markets, schooling and consumer markets (Pager and Shepherd, 2008). ...
Full-text available
This article outlines the theoretical foundations of the research contributions of this edited collection about “Diversity and Discrimination in Research Organizations.” First, the sociological understanding of the basic concepts of diversity and discrimination is described and the current state of research is introduced. Second, national and organizational contextual conditions and risk factors that shape discrimination experiences and the management of diversity in research teams and organizations are presented. Third, the questions and research approaches of the individual contributions to this edited collection are presented.
... Based on an ethical argument for inclusive recruitment and to ensure high quality of products and services, STEM organizations aim to increase workforce diversity by recruiting and maintaining employees who continue to be underrepresented in this sector. Workforce diversity refers to the differences between employees regarding demographic and functional characteristics (Van Knippenberg & Schippers, 2007). The impact of the diversification on the opportunity to maintain healthy and committed employees has received limited scholarly attention (Jaiswal & Dyaram, 2019). ...
... Studies have found dominantly negative consequences of perceived diversity (Shemla et al., 2016). The social categorization theory (Van Knippenberg & Schippers, 2007) states that diversity might display an additional emotional and cognitive demanding aspect. The employees need to deal with higher cognitive effort because of the differences among team members (e.g., cultural differences). ...
This study examines the interaction between stressful work experiences, workplace diversity, and inclusion. Our hypothesized moderated moderation model argues that employee exhaustion and affective commitment suffer less from work–self conflict, discrimination, and nontransparent work procedures when employees feel included in diverse perceived environments. A total of 1187 employees of a university of technology completed electronical surveys. The results indicated that the negative relationships between stressful work experiences and organizational commitment were weaker if employees felt more included in perceived diverse work environments. Diversity and inclusion did not shape the relationships between stressful work experiences and employee exhaustion. The study emphasizes the buffering role of inclusion in diversifying organizations and offers a better understanding of how diversity and inclusion interact with other work aspects.
... Systematic reviews of the literature, primarily from the fields of community psychology, management, and organizational behavior, articulate three hypothesized mechanisms that help to explain the ways in which diversity within work groups can influence their performance (Roberson, 2019;Van Knippenberg & Schippers, 2007;Williams & O'Reilly, 1998). First, the social categorization hypothesis asserts that individuals maintain social identities by categorizing and distinguishing each other according to salient group characteristics (Tajfel, 1981). ...
... Although the literature supports the hypothesis that characteristics of group diversity impact the performance of work groups, the strength, and direction of this relationship have been mixed (Horwitz & Horwitz, 2007;Jackson, 2003;Joshi & Roh, 2009). Most of the research focuses on explicit, widely recognized, and traditionally measurable sociodemographic characteristics (e.g., age, gender, race, and ethnicity); a few studies address implicit and nuanced group characteristics that influence power, position, and interactions among group members (Horwitz & Horwitz, 2007;Jackson, 2003;Roberson, 2019;Van Knippenberg & Schippers, 2007). The scarcity of evidence in this area motivates efforts to clarify how implicit and explicit group characteristics influence the collective functioning of work teams across different settings. ...
Full-text available
Public health has endorsed the use of community‐based participatory research (CBPR) to address health inequities involving diverse and marginalized communities. However, few studies have examined how group diversity among members of CBPR partnerships influenced how well the partnerships achieve their goals of addressing health inequities through equitable collaboration. We conducted secondary, convergent, mixed methods analysis to (1) evaluate the association between group diversity and participatory decision‐making within CBPR partnerships, and (2) identify the perceived characteristics, benefits, and challenges of group diversity within CBPR partnerships. Using data from a crosssite study of federally funded CBPR partnerships, we analyzed and integrated data from surveys of 163 partnerships (n = 448 partners) and seven in‐depth case study interviews (n = 55 partners). Quantitatively, none of the measured characteristics of group diversity was associated with participatory decisionmaking within the partnerships. Qualitatively, we found that partnerships mainly benefited from membership differences in functional characteristics (e.g., skillset) but faced challenges from membership differences in sociocultural characteristics (e.g., gender and race). The integrated findings suggest the need to further understand how emergent group characteristics and how practices that engage in group diversity contribute to collective functioning of the partnerships. Attention to this area can help promote health equity achievements of CBPR partnerships.
... As such, they may perceive the individual with a disability as an "out-group" member. This labeling process triggers stereotypic perceptions of those with disabilities (Van Knippenberg & Schippers, 2007). This effect may be particularly present within organizations, where people with visible disabilities are scarce and are more likely to be in lower-level and/or part-time positions (de Carvalho-Freitas & Stathi, 2017). ...
Full-text available
We developed and examined the effectiveness of three types of video interventions to mitigate bias toward individuals with disabilities in the workplace. Based on theory and research, we developed (1) an education video that provided knowledge about disabilities in the workplace, (2) socialization videos that provided experiences of employees with disabilities, (3) a combined education and socialization video, and (4) a control video about workplace diversity broadly. We conducted two randomized controlled trial studies (study 1 N = 202; study 2 N = 286) with outcome measurements pre-intervention, immediately post-intervention, and one week post-intervention. Outcomes included knowledge and awareness about disabilities in the workplace, attitudes toward individuals with disabilities, and ratings of hypothetical applicants with mental health and physical disabilities. In study 1, compared to the control video, positive changes were observed in knowledge and awareness for the education and combined videos and cognitive attitudes for the socialization video. The education video also demonstrated improvement in a hiring scenario rating for a hypothetical job applicant with a mental health disability. In study 2, we observed evidence that the effectiveness of socialization videos’ bias reduction may be contingent upon the type of disability portrayed in the video corresponding with the hypothetical applicant being rated. Our findings imply that it may be possible to reduce hiring bias against people with disabilities through the short video interventions if evaluations of job applicants are made very soon after an intervention is presented. Positive benefits decay over time; therefore, it is important for organizations to go beyond such measures.
... Diversity cultivates a more open and innovative culture in an organization. The difference in culture, knowledge, and preferences of team members contributes to a more thorough information processing and better problem-solving skills (Knippenberg & Schippers, 2007). The difference in views stimulates more debates and enables the team to make decisions more carefully. ...
The relationship between employee quality and firm outcomes is extensively explored in the literature. Prior research focuses on examining the quality of top managers in a limited number of industries or using smaller datasets. This study fills this literature gap using demographic characteristics from Metropolitan Statistical Areas, where firm headquarters are located as a proxy for employee quality. The findings show that firms with high employee quality in terms of employee competency and diversity exhibit higher firm value. The results show that ensuring the availability of an educated and diverse workforce provides long‐lasting firm value.
Full-text available
This study was to investigate the mediating effects of psychological safety and perspective taking in the process of intergenerational harmony influencing constructive and supportive voice behavior. In addition, in this process, group differences in terms of generational identity were examined. For the study, data were collected from 311 workers in domestic organizations, and the research model was tested using the structural equation modeling. The result showed that the perception of intergenerational harmony had a positive effect on constructive speech behavior through psychological safety and acceptance of perspective, and it was appropriate to view it as a complete mediation. In the process of intergenerational harmony affecting supportive speech behavior, the mediating effect of perspective taking was significant, while that of psychological safety was not significant. In addition to these results, the group difference in terms of generational identity was found in the mediating process of psychological safety on supportive speech behavior. In the group classified as the new generation, the mediating effect of psychological safety was significant, while the older generation was not. Based on the research results, the academic significance and practical implications of this study were discussed, and limitations and future research tasks were presented.
Geographically distributed teams often face challenges in coordination and collaboration, lowering their productivity. Understanding the relationship between team dispersion and productivity is critical for supporting such teams. Extensive prior research has studied these relations in lab settings or using qualitative measures. This paper extends prior work by contributing an empirical case study in a real-world organization, using quantitative measures. We studied 117 new research project teams from the same discipline within an industrial research lab for 6 months. During this time, all teams shared one goal: submitting research papers to the same target conference. We analyzed these teams' dispersion-related characteristics as well as team productivity. Interestingly, we found little statistical evidence that geographic and time differences relate to team productivity. However, organizational and functional distances are predictive of the productivity of the dispersed teams we studied. We discuss the open research questions these findings revealed and their implications for future research.
Research on entrepreneurial team diversity (ETD) has reached a critical juncture as inconsistent findings hinder further theory development. The main reasons for these inconsistencies are one-dimensional theoretical perspectives that make it difficult to comprehensively theorize the benefits and barriers of ETD from a cross-disciplinary perspective. To address this shortcoming, we systematically identify existing literature and classify 44 studies into an ‘inputs-mediators-outcomes’ (IMO) framework. We find that the field is considerably fragmented, especially with regard to disciplinary perspectives, study contexts, diversity dimensions, and outcome variables. To invigorate and advance the research stream, we highlight unresolved issues and knowledge gaps in the current literature and propose a multi-disciplinary research agenda presented in the form of an IMO framework. We conclude that, while existing research on ETD offers a solid foundation, it is far from having reached its full potential.
This chapter advances an uncertainty perspective to better understand and address the challenges of enhancing performance and inclusion in diverse teams. Decades of research on diversity in teams has spawned very useful insights, but is also riddled with inconclusive findings. Because diversity research tends to rely on and recycle the same theories, this chapter proposes that a better understanding of diversity can be fostered by applying a different perspective. In considering diversity as enhancing uncertainty and corresponding anxiety, this chapter proposes that diversity causes members to manage uncertainty by relying on cognitive shortcuts to make inferences about each other, which is likely to yield inaccurate attributions of intentions and competence and can harm performance. Moreover, in trying to create certainty, diverse and majority team members are likely to behave in conflicting and antagonizing ways, which harms inclusion. As such, the uncertainty perspective provides a novel understanding of the perceptions, behaviors, and corresponding dynamics that shape the performance of diverse teams and members’ experienced levels of inclusion. In suggesting that perceptions and experiences of uncertainty and anxiety underlie processes and outcomes in diverse teams, the uncertainty perspective also offers a number of suggestions to manage diversity-infused uncertainty and enhance team performance as well as inclusion.
Multilevel researchers often gather individual-level data to measure group-level constructs. Within-group agreement is a key consideration in the measurement of such constructs, yet antecedents of within-group agreement have been little studied. The authors found that group member social interaction and work interdependence were significantly positively related to within-group agreement regarding perceptions of the work environment. Demographic heterogeneity was not significantly related to within-group agreement. Survey wording showed a complex relationship to agreement. Both evaluative items and socially undesirable items generated high within-group agreement. The use of a group rather than individual referent increased within-group agreement in response to descriptive items but decreased within-group agreement in response to evaluative items. Items with a group referent showed greater between-group variability than items with an individual referent.