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Discontinuities and continuities: a new way to understand virtual work

Discontinuities and continuities: a new way to understand virtual work “Virtual” is a potent buzzword, freely applied to many situations, with many meanings. In this exploratory study, we develop a more precise understanding of “virtual” to describe changing work environments. Specifically, we propose a framework to classify work environments based on the type of discontinuities involved. Discontinuities are gaps or a lack of coherence in aspects of work. The framework allows us to compare research across different topics and work settings. We use the framework to classify 75 published articles on virtual work environments or earlier, related research streams. We observed that many studies were simultaneously addressing existing or emerging continuities, factors or strategies for overcoming discontinuities. The focus of “virtual” is on changes in the work environment; however, our analysis suggests the need to be equally aware of factors that have not changed and which may become more critical with the introduction of discontinuities. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Information Technology & People Emerald Publishing

Discontinuities and continuities: a new way to understand virtual work

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2002 MCB UP Ltd. All rights reserved.
ISSN
0959-3845
DOI
10.1108/09593840210444746
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

“Virtual” is a potent buzzword, freely applied to many situations, with many meanings. In this exploratory study, we develop a more precise understanding of “virtual” to describe changing work environments. Specifically, we propose a framework to classify work environments based on the type of discontinuities involved. Discontinuities are gaps or a lack of coherence in aspects of work. The framework allows us to compare research across different topics and work settings. We use the framework to classify 75 published articles on virtual work environments or earlier, related research streams. We observed that many studies were simultaneously addressing existing or emerging continuities, factors or strategies for overcoming discontinuities. The focus of “virtual” is on changes in the work environment; however, our analysis suggests the need to be equally aware of factors that have not changed and which may become more critical with the introduction of discontinuities.

Journal

Information Technology & PeopleEmerald Publishing

Published: Sep 1, 2002

Keywords: Work design; Information technology; Communications technology

References

  • Toward the virtual supply chain: the convergence of IT and organization
    Chandrashekar, A.; Schary, P.B.
  • Finding an extra day a week: the positive influence of perceived job flexibility on work and family life balance
    Hill, E.J.; Hawkins, A.J.; Ferris, M.; Weitzman, M.
  • The scientific visualization of organizations: a rationale for a new approach to organizational modeling
    Markham, S.E.
  • Distributed group support systems
    Turoff, M.; Hiltz, S.R.; Bahgat, A.N.F.; Rana, A.R.

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