N.S. (Natasha Stacy) Sutherland

Natasha Stacy Sutherland
Rotterdam School of Management (RSM)
Erasmus University Rotterdam
ERIM PhD Candidate
Field: Organisation
Affiliated since 2023

PhD Track Team Diversity Change: A Dynamic Perspective on Team Diversity and Performance

With increasing globalization and labor mobility, it is important to study not only the effects of the level of team diversity on performance but also how change in team diversity from adding, replacing, or losing members affects team performance. Research produced considerable knowledge about the effects of diversity on performance from cross-sectional comparisons of more and less diverse teams. Because membership change is an influence in and of itself, this earlier research cannot be extrapolated to understand the effects of diversity change. Addressing this issue in this project, we develop theory about the effects of diversity change on team processes and performance, focusing on change in functional background diversity and change in cultural diversity. The core proposition underlying the project is that teams with the same level of diversity can differ in their processes and performance as a function of whether their diversity is the result of a recent increase in diversity, a recent decrease in diversity, or unchanged over time. We identify transactive memory (members’ understanding of the distribution of knowledge in their team) and team information elaboration (exchange and integration of information and perspectives) that is stimulated by transactive memory, as the key mediating processes in diversity change effects on performance. We identify team task interdependence and team reflexivity (reflection on team functioning to learn and improve) as key moderators that attenuate the disruptive effects of diversity change. We test our hypotheses in three laboratory experiments and three longitudinal surveys in organizations that complement and extend the experiments.


Dynamics, Information Processing, Longitudinal, Team Diversity
Time frame
2023 -


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Office: T10-56
Burgemeester Oudlaan 50
3062 PA Rotterdam

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