The Value of Teamwork: Evidence from Crowdsourcing Contests

38 Pages Posted: 7 Mar 2023 Last revised: 30 Oct 2023

See all articles by Huiyan Chen

Huiyan Chen

University of Connecticut - Department of Operations & Information Management

Jing Peng

University of Connecticut - Department of Operations & Information Management

Jan Stallaert

University of Connecticut - School of Business

Sulin Ba

University of Connecticut School of Business

Date Written: October 29, 2023

Abstract

Virtual teams have become a popular mode of work in today’s globalized environment. However, the exact value of virtual teamwork remains elusive. In this study, we empirically analyze machine learning contests from Kaggle to investigate the impact of virtual teamwork on performance. We find that participants achieve significantly better performance when working in virtual teams than working independently. Furthermore, experienced participants benefit more from teamwork than their less-experienced counterparts. Our results also demonstrate that rival and nonrival incentives have opposite effects on the performance of virtual teams. The presence of symbolic rewards (nonrival) improves the performance of virtual teams, whereas team performance decreases with the size of the monetary rewards (rival). Finally, our mediation analysis provides suggestive evidence that teamwork enhances performance by stimulating the team members to work harder and more creatively. Our study provides critical insights into the value of teamwork and has practical implications for the composition of virtual teams and incentive design for crowdsourcing platforms.

Keywords: teamwork, incentive design, monetary reward, symbolic reward, experience

Suggested Citation

Chen, Huiyan and Peng, Jing and Stallaert, Jan and Ba, Sulin, The Value of Teamwork: Evidence from Crowdsourcing Contests (October 29, 2023). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4376582 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4376582

Huiyan Chen

University of Connecticut - Department of Operations & Information Management ( email )

2100 Hillside Rd
Unit 407
Storrs, CT CT 06269
United States
06269 (Fax)

Jing Peng (Contact Author)

University of Connecticut - Department of Operations & Information Management ( email )

368 Fairfield Road
Storrs, CT 06269-2041
United States

Jan Stallaert

University of Connecticut - School of Business ( email )

368 Fairfield Road
Storrs, CT 06269-2041
United States

Sulin Ba

University of Connecticut School of Business ( email )

368 Fairfield Road
Storrs, CT 06269-2041
United States

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