Business & Information Systems Engineering

Document Type

Research Paper


The paper draws on information processing theory to propose that national diversity creates barriers to the integration of information among members of global software development teams, negatively impacting software quality and development speed. However, the effect of such relationships was expected to be contingent upon the amount of time that team members had worked together in the past (i.e., previous working ties). Hypotheses were tested in a field study involving 62 global software development teams distributed across Europe and Central and South America. Teams with high levels of previous working ties developed greater quality software at a faster pace. National diversity had a positive effect on software quality in teams with high levels of previous working ties, but a negative effect in teams with low levels of previous working ties. National diversity also had a negative impact on software development speed, but the effect was less pronounced among teams with high levels of previous working ties than on teams low in previous working ties.