Free riding is a common challenge in global virtual teams.
Studies show that up to 95% of virtual team experience free-riding (X-Culture data seems to support this claim, too).
Free-riding can have detrimental effect on team performance and it’s critically important to understand what causes free-riding, its consequences, and methods to alleviate the problem

Accordingly, I would like to conduct several studies on the issue:
Paper 1: What predicts free-riding?
Understanding what predicts free-riding can help deal with the problem by designing more effective team member selection system. This study will explore a wide range of predictors, including individual characteristics, course design, instructor’s characteristics, and task design.
Paper 2: Consequences of free-riding
Is free-riding really that bad? The study will explore how free-riding affects team performance, satisfaction, commitment, and other processes and outcomes.


Paper 3: Dealing with Free-Riding
I am trying to design and test several strategies for dealing with free-riding. Some of them are a natural experiment (just differences we happened to embed in different seasons of X-Culture), some are still to be properly tested.



Vas Taras

Bill Tullar

Piers Steel

Tom O’Neil


The project is supported by a grant from SHRM

Status: Data collected, one paper under R&R at a major journal, one presented at a conference, the study continues.