Severity of Ethical Issues in Virtual Teams on Construction Projects

Timo Olugbenga Oladinrin*, Lekan Damilola Ojo, Onaopepo Adeniyi, Funke Dorcas Adedeji

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic has brought a new dynamic into team decision-making on construction projects. Face-to-face meetings of construction stakeholders have largely metamorphosed into virtual. Meanwhile, the online decision-making process has been challenged by some ethical issues, especially in developing countries. To have an empirical investigation of the ethical issues concerning virtual teams’ decision-making process on construction projects, an online survey was purposely conducted among construction professionals in Lagos State, Nigeria. This is important to pinpoint the severity of ethical issues confronting virtual team decision-making process in a developing nation and to proffer useful solutions to the problems. To achieve this goal, descriptive and inferential analyses were conducted with the data collected from the online survey of fifty-eight construction professionals in the target area of study. First, the reliability of the dataset was checked with Cronbach’s alpha value. The normality of the data retrieved was also determined with Shapiro-Wilk test, while the significance difference on the opinions of the respondents on the ethical issues were checked with Kruskal-Wallis H test. Finally, a modified relative severity value (mRSV) was computed to determine the severity of the ethical issues. Based on the results of the analysis, the high ranked ethical issues in virtual teams are technical uncertainties, unpredictable communication, lack of follow-through on ideas, and unequally distributed information, among others. Several recommendations were suggested such as ensuring that stakeholders find a collective solution to the potential technical glitches of participants at different locations. The tendency of seamless participation on online platforms should be appraised before proposing a virtual collaboration. Conclusively, a virtual team decision making process is indispensable in this digital world, thus, mitigating the ethical and other challenges confronting the process is important for its continual deployment in construction organisations and on construction projects.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Business Governance and Ethics
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 16 Aug 2022

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