Team Resilience in Complex and Turbulent Environments: The Effect of Size and Density of Social Interactions Page: 3
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scenarios are considered, consisting of teams with different
sizes and densities of social interactions.
Our study shows that the team size negatively affects the
team resilience. Furthermore, both the magnitude and the
frequency of disturbance negatively moderate the relation-
ship between the team size and the team resilience. As to
the density, we find that the density of social interactions pos-
itively influences the team resilience, while the magnitude of
disturbance (frequency) negatively (positively) moderates
the relationship between the density and the team resilience.
The paper is organized as follows. We first provide the
theoretical background of the study, by underlying the defini-
tions of organizational resilience and carrying out a brief
review of its main drivers. Then, we describe the model of
team collective decision-making in terms of dynamics, model
of environment, and performance. Successively, we discuss
the simulation analysis carried out using the model, and the
results are achieved. We end with conclusions concerning
limitations and further research.
2. Organizational Resilience
2.1. Definitions. Resilience is both a multifaceted and multidi-
mensional concept . The term originated in ecology and
environment field of studies and was introduced by Holling
, who defined the resilience of an ecosystem as its ability
to absorb change and still exists. Resilience is related to stabil-
ity and the ability of the system to return to the original equi-
librium after perturbation.
Since Holling's seminal contribution, the concept has
attracted the attention of scholars in multiple and even dis-
tant fields such as physics, engineering, psychology, com-
puter science, economics, and management. It has been
applied to multidisciplinary contexts, such as energy supply
networks, supply chains, organizational teams, computer
networks, transportation, and financial systems.
Despite this multidisciplinary nature, scholars agree with
the definition of resilience recognizing two main perspec-
tives, that is, the static and dynamic ones [13, 14, 53]. The
resilience is static when it focuses on the ability of the system
to absorb disturbance and bounce back to the original equi-
librium state, maintaining its core functions when shocked
[6, 9]. In such a case, the resilience is tied to the property of
hardiness and robustness of materials, as the ability to
recover the original shape and features once stretched. The
dynamic perspective focuses on the ability of the system to
evolve over time moving towards the original but even new,
more favorable equilibrium state [2, 54, 55]. Rather than
focusing on the ability of the system to resist to change,
this perspective puts the attention on the adaptive capacity
of the system, which is able to react to disturbance by
changing its structure, processes, and functions in order
to increase its ability to persist . In this case, the sys-
tem is resilient not because it is able to absorb disturbance,
preserve organizational functioning, and recover but because
it adapts to change.
These two opposite perspectives of resilience are impor-
tant especially for organizational systems, because different
organizational features are required to provide them. The
ability to resist to change needs to develop a "defence"
approach to the threat . In such a case, organizations
should provide themselves of monitoring capability to detect
and anticipate the critical event and should consider to
increase diversity and redundancy of resources .
The adaptive capacity needs an "offence" proactive
approach. In such a case, the disturbance is seen as an oppor-
tunity not a threat and resilience requires the ability to acti-
vate, combine, and extend the resources as the adverse
conditions arise . Resilient organizations activate positive
feedback loops that refine and strengthen their capabilities
in order to avoid rigidity and create opportunities from the
adverse situations .
Finally, even though in the majority of studies the
organizational resilience is viewed as a positive characteris-
tic, a recent contribution  recognizes that it can be
desirable or undesirable, depending on the system state.
When the system operates at not desirable conditions for
key stakeholders, resilience is a negative property because
it pushes the system to resist change and restore a nega-
2.2. Drivers of Organizational Resilience. There is a limited
literature that explores the drivers of organizational resilience
. The psychological school notes that the resilience of
organization "builds on the foundation of the resilience of
members of that organization" . Individual resilience is
defined as "the capacity to rebound or bounce back from
adversity, conflict, failure, or even positive events, progress,
and increased responsibility" . It depends on behavioral
and psychological traits of individual. Werner and Smith
 find that resilient individuals are characterized by prob-
lem solving abilities, favorable perceptions, positive rein-
forcement, and strong faith. Masten  identifies cognitive
abilities, temperament, positive self-perceptions, faith, a
positive outlook on life, emotional stability, self-regulation,
a sense of humor, and general appeal or attractiveness as
potential assets that can contribute to higher resiliency. Fisk
and Dionisi  investigate self-monitoring, self-efficacy,
self-evaluation, the five personality traits, and emotional
intelligence. Coutu  finds that common features of resil-
ient individuals are the acceptance of reality, the belief that
life is beautiful, and ability to improvise.
At the organizational level, resilience should be seen as
much as an individual trait . Organizational resilience is
rooted in the complexity "logic." It is more than the addi-
tive combination of individual capabilities . It is a col-
lective and emerging capacity of the system resulting from
both the actions of individuals and their interactions .
For example, assembling a group of resilient individuals
does not assure to obtain a resilient team. The lack of com-
munications, the existence of conflicts concerning leader-
ships and decisions, and the lack of a social identity can
undermine the ability to react and quickly adapt to a chang-
ing environment .
In this respect, the network of complex interactions
among individuals is critical to enhance resilience. Good
relations and constructive interactions are recognized as
key features to enhance team resilience . Stephens
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Giannoccaro, Ilaria; Massari, Giovanni F. & Carbone, Giuseppe. Team Resilience in Complex and Turbulent Environments: The Effect of Size and Density of Social Interactions, article, July 24, 2018; Cairo, Egypt. (https://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc1234365/m1/3/: accessed March 24, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, https://digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT College of Arts and Sciences.