Assistant Professor of Organisational Behaviour
Cultural Brokerage; Multicultural Teams; Cultural Diversity; Creativity; Multicultural Individuals; Cultural Overlap; Open Access Article;
This paper presents a novel theoretical framework of how members of multicultural teams leverage their diverse knowledge to produce creative outcomes. The author develops and tests a model of cultural brokerage, which she defines as the act of facilitating interactions between actors across cultural boundaries.The author finds that team members with multicultural backgrounds engage in cultural brokerage on behalf of monocultural team members. Among multiculturals, “cultural insiders” (those whose cultural background overlaps with other team members’) brokered by integrating knowledge from different cultures, whereas “cultural outsiders” (those whose cultural background has no overlap with any other team members’) brokered by eliciting knowledge from different cultures. Both integrating and eliciting significantly enhanced creative performance at the team level.These findings advance our understanding of the process of creativity in culturally diverse teams.