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The Social NetUnderstanding our online behavior$
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Yair Amichai-Hamburger

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199639540

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199639540.001.0001

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Leadership within Virtual Contexts

Leadership within Virtual Contexts

(p.180) Chapter 10 Leadership within Virtual Contexts
The Social Net

Crystal L. Hoyt

Oxford University Press

This chapter provides an overview of leadership within virtual contexts with a particular focus on relevant theories and empirical research. The chapter opens with a discussion of some of the leading changes, challenges, and opportunities for leaders brought about by the proliferation of advanced information technologies. Next, classic theoretical approaches to understanding leadership in traditional face-to-face contexts are reviewed; these include the great person approach, the behavioral approach, situational contingency perspectives, relational perspectives, and transformational leadership. This is followed by a review of various theories, including those focused on advanced technologies and communication, relevant to leadership within virtual contexts. These theories include adaptive structuration theory, Zaccaro's model of leadership and virtual team processes, the social identity model of deindividuation effects, and media richness theory. Next, the extant empirical research examining leadership in virtual contexts is assessed. First, research examining the impact of leadership on group interactions and effectiveness in virtual contexts is reviewed by presenting research undertaken in the field followed by experimental investigations. Next, the ample research investigating transformational leadership in virtual contexts as well as across contexts is discussed. The review of this research ends with an overview of other approaches to leadership within virtual contexts by focusing on participative leadership, leader—member exchange theory, and emergent leadership. Finally, the chapter ends with a brief discussion of other promising theoretical approaches for future research with a focus on relational and perception-based approaches.

Keywords:   leadership challenges, great person approach, behavioral approach, situational contingency perspectives, relational perspectives, transformational leadership, adaptive structuration theory, Zaccaro's leadership model, virtual team processes, social identity model of deindividuation effects, media richness theory, relational and perception-based approaches

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