Group decision support systems vs. face-to-face communication for collaborative group work: An experimental investigation.
AuthorEaston, George Kurtis
AdvisorNunamaker, Jay F.
Committee ChairNunamaker, Jay F.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractOrganizations must consider increasing their decision-making capabilities in order to remain viable in a post-industrial society that Huber characterized as having "more and increasing knowledge, more and increasing complexity, and more and increasing turbulence" (1984). He sees the challenge for managers in the post-industrial environment as learning to make decisions in less time using greater quantities of more complex information. Group Decision Support Systems (GDSSs) represent a computer-based technology that has the potential to increase an organization's decision-making capabilities, and to meet this post-industrial challenge. This dissertation investigated a specific GDSS to study how GDSS technology affects group decision making compared to the more traditional face-to-face group decision making. The research was conducted through the use of a laboratory study comparing face-to-face groups of size six to GDSS groups of the same size. The decision process was the same for both types of groups, i.e., the sequence of steps used to solve the problem was consistent for both. Additionally, all of the groups were given the same task. Process and decision outcomes were measured for the six sets of treatments considered feasible for the manipulation of the communication condition, leadership, and anonymity. The process outcomes included satisfaction, time to decision, consensus, participation and uninhibited comments. The quality of a group's decision was the decision outcome measurement. The major findings of this study are: (1) Decision quality was equivalent for both face-to-face and GDSS groups; (2) Time to decision was greater for GDSS; (3) Consensus was less likely to occur in GDSS groups; (4) Satisfaction was lower in GDSS groups; (5) Participation was more equitable in GDSS groups.
Degree ProgramBusiness Administration