Investigating the Impact of Racial Diversity in Decision-making Groups: The Moderating Role of Relationship Conflict

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To date, numerous research endeavors have documented both the positive and negative effects of racial diversity on numerous group-level performance outcomes. Indeed, a reading of the racial diversity literature would lead one to make one of two contradictory predictions regarding the effects of racial diversity in groups. In the interest of solving this theoretical issue, both perspectives were synthesized, such that racially diverse groups were expected to outperform homogeneous groups when performing a decision-making task, but only when relationship conflict between members was minimized. In addition, the association between racial diversity and decision-making quality was expected to be negative when relationship conflict between members was high. A study is reported which investigates the validity of and finds general support for this proposition (i.e., racial diversity in groups increased the group’s ability to make accurate decisions, but only under conditions in which relationship conflict between group members was kept to a minimum). A discussion is offered in which the implications of these results are entertained.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalNegotiation and Conflict Management Research
StateAccepted/In press - 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Communication
  • Strategy and Management

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