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Information Sharing, Cognitive Centrality, and Influence among Business Executives during Collective Choice

  • Abele, S.C.
  • Vaughan-Parsons, S.I.
  • Stasser, G.
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    Laboratory studies have shown that decision-making groups tend to focus on common information at the expense of unique information. In the current study, high level business executives completed a personnel selection task. Access to information about the candidates was not controlled as in a typical study of information sharing, but common, partially shared, and unique information arose naturally from the individual members’ information searches. During subsequent discussions, groups mentioned more common than partially shared than unique information. However, the underlying processes seemed to be different from what has been observed in laboratory studies. The popularity of information in the population from which groups were composed predicted both the number of a group’s members who accessed an item in their information searches and whether the group discussed the item. However, the number of group members who accessed an item did predict whether information was repeated during discussion, and repetition predicted which items were included on a final written summary. Finally, cognitively central group members were more influential than cognitively peripheral members.

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    Paper provided by Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), ERIM is the joint research institute of the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University and the Erasmus School of Economics (ESE) at Erasmus University Rotterdam in its series ERIM Report Series Research in Management with number ERS-2005-037-ORG.

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    Date of creation: 09 Jun 2005
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:ems:eureri:6664
    Contact details of provider: Postal: RSM Erasmus University & Erasmus School of Economics, PoBox 1738, 3000 DR Rotterdam
    Phone: 31-10-408 1182
    Fax: 31-10-408 9020
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    1. Parks, Craig D. & Cowlin, Rebecca A., 1996. "Acceptance of Uncommon Information into Group Discussion When That Information Is or Is Not Demonstrable," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 66(3), pages 307-315, June.
    2. Gruenfeld, Deborah H & Mannix, Elizabeth A. & Williams, Katherine Y. & Neale, Margaret A., 1996. "Group Composition and Decision Making: How Member Familiarity and Information Distribution Affect Process and Performance," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 1-15, July.
    3. Hollingshead, Andrea B., 1996. "The Rank-Order Effect in Group Decision Making," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 68(3), pages 181-193, December.
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