Birke Laubinger

Management, Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich

When people work together, an informal hierarchy often emerges that becomes an advantage to some and a disadvantage to others. Those at the top of this hierarchy act confidently, receive positive feedback, and have good career opportunities.

We know from social psychology research how social hierarchies form in physical collaboration and affect individual and collective performance. But what happens when collaboration occurs in now-virtual spaces because people are distant from each other and rely on technology to communicate?

My dissertation explores the impact of digital collaboration on the relational fabric within organizations. To whom is competence and respect attributed, and how do informal rankings emerge? Who receives career opportunities? How must digital collaboration be designed to be effective and fair?