, Volume 19, Issue 4, pp 181-188
Date: 12 Oct 2009

eCollaboration: On the nature and emergence of communication and collaboration technologies

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Introduction

The past decades yielded fundamental changes to the ways in which value creation is being organized. Globalization and market deregulation motivate businesses to expand into new, often remote markets, which requires them to decentralize and distribute work and often to partner with local organizations, which in turn brings with it changes to the ways in which people need to organize their work (Bleecker 1994). Also, shorter product life-cycles and the pressure to constantly innovate have led many businesses to experiment with new organizational structures (Quinn 1992). This leads to a situation, in which businesses today need to manage numerous external collaborative relationships with other parties in the marketplace (Ebers 1999). Furthermore, traditional internal structures are being broken up in order to give way to more flexible and responsive work setups. The ramifications of these developments are that people increasingly work in dispersed setups and are involved in c ...