Scandinavian Working Papers in Business Administration

SSE Working Paper Series in Business Administration,
Stockholm School of Economics

No 2020:2: Team Collective Intelligence: Developing and testing a knowledge integration model

Philip Runsten () and Andreas Werr ()
Additional contact information
Philip Runsten: Dept. of Management and Organization, Postal: Stockholm School of Economics, P.O. Box 6501, SE-113 83 Stockholm, Sweden
Andreas Werr: Dept. of Management and Organization, Postal: Stockholm School of Economics, P.O. Box 6501, SE-113 83 Stockholm, Sweden

Abstract: Teams, as collectives of individuals, sharing a purpose and goals, and bringing different competences and experiences to the process of working together, will play an increasingly critical role as specialization increases in organizations. In these situations, the teams’ ability of local adaptive knowledge integration can help organizations cope with increasing challenges of complexity. This report develops a definition of team-level collective intelligence and argues that it varies with the team’s ability to integrate their individual knowledge. Based on an integration of the team learning and transactive memory systems literatures, a model of knowledge integration is developed with the team processes of Reflection and Integration interacting with the team emergent states of Representation and Relation. The model is tested on a sample of 50 teams from 22 international and Swedish private and public organizations. All variables of the team capabilities Reflection, Integration, Representation and Relation were significantly related to each other. All variables were also significantly related to team performance, except Expertise location as part of Representation. The Relation variable Psychological safety, and the Representation variables Clear and Whole task were found to mediate the relation of all other variables to team performance. This indicates that integration and reflection behavior of team members relate to performance by 1) developing an advanced, shared and meaningful representation and 2) developing relations that ensure the team of its member’s deeper residing thoughts and ideas.

Keywords: teams; collective intelligence; team intelligence; group intelligence; learning; psychological safety; transactive memory system; collective mind; heedful interrelating

JEL-codes: M50; M54; M59

44 pages, May 20, 2020

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