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Effects of the information environment on group discussions and decisions in the hidden-profile paradigm
Research on the Information Sampling Model (ISM) revealed that information items that are known to all group members at the outset (shared information) are more likely to be mentioned during discussion than information items that are only known to individual members (unshared information) (Stasser & Titus, 1985; Wittenbaum, Hollingshead, & Botero, 2004). In prior studies involving the ISM, groups typically functioned in a very specific information environment: All information items were provided in form of unique cues, which described only one of the choice alternatives among which the groups had to choose. Because this specific information environment may impact group discussions and decisions, we included an experimental condition incorporating common cues. In contrast to unique cues, common cues provide information on each and every choice option. As expected, groups in the common-cue condition showed a weaker sampling advantage for shared information, and chose the hidden-profile alternative more often than groups in the classic unique-cue condition.
Group decision making, communication, Information-sampling model, Information sharing, Cue-based decision strategy, Alternative-based decision strategy, Group performance, Unique and common cues, Group discussion, Hidden profile, Decision strategies
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