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Effects of Anonymity and Evaluative Tone on Idea Generation in Computer-Mediated Groups

Author

Listed:
  • Terry Connolly

    (Karl Eller Graduate School of Management, University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona 85721)

  • Leonard M. Jessup

    (MIS Department, California State University, San Marcos, California 92069)

  • Joseph S. Valacich

    (Karl Eller Graduate School of Management, University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona 85721)

Abstract

A laboratory experiment was used to evaluate the effects of anonymity and evaluative tone on computer-mediated groups using a group decision support system to perform an idea-generation task. Evaluative tone was manipulated through a confederate group member who entered supportive or critical comments into the automated brainstorming system. Groups working anonymously and with a critical confederate produced the greatest number of original solutions and overall comments, yet average solution quality per item and average solution rarity were not different across conditions. Identified groups working with a supportive confederate were the most satisfied and had the highest levels of perceived effectiveness, but produced the fewest original solutions and overall comments.

Suggested Citation

  • Terry Connolly & Leonard M. Jessup & Joseph S. Valacich, 1990. "Effects of Anonymity and Evaluative Tone on Idea Generation in Computer-Mediated Groups," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 36(6), pages 689-703, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:36:y:1990:i:6:p:689-703
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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1287/mnsc.36.6.689
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