Globally distributed software development is facing challenges brought by geographic distance, temporal separation, and cultural diversity. Yet research regarding the impact of temporal separation and cultural differences is limited. This paper draws on an interpretive case study to examine the influence of culture on temporal separation and coordination of globally distributed software development. Our findings reveal that temporal separation is a culturally bounded concept. Cultural differences in time perception, hierarchical structure, relationship orientation, and social obligation at the societal level are found to be relevant to temporal separation. We identify multiple ways that link culture differences to the temporal separation: language issues, time estimation and commitment, adherence to a schedule, availability/unavailability for synchronous interaction, and the mediating effect of organizational culture. A research framework is developed based on theoretical considerations and then refined based on empirical findings. This paper concludes with a set of implications for both practice and theory.
Huang, Halyan and Trauth, Eileen M., "Cultural Influences on Temporal Separation and Coordination in Globally Distributed Software Development" (2008). ICIS 2008 Proceedings. 134.