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Computer simulation exploring organizational identification for contingent workers

Ozgur Ekmekci (Department of Clinical Research and Leadership, School of Medicine and Health Sciences, The George Washington University, Washington, DC, USA)
Andrea Casey (The George Washington University, Washington, DC, USA)

Team Performance Management

ISSN: 1352-7592

Article publication date: 23 August 2011




Very little is known about how contingent workers' identification with an organization evolves over time. This study seeks to contribute to the literature by investigating how the emergence and strength of organizational identification is affected by four variables: duration of primacy; duration of recency; frequency of interaction with other members of the organization; and frequency of information received about the organization.


Using a cognitive model of organizational identification grounded in memory, agent‐based modeling and NetLogo language were employed to form a model in which two groups of 567 contingent workers joined 1,134 different organizations and worked for 365 days. Correlation and multiple linear regression were used to analyze the data.


Evolution of organizational identification for a contingent worker depends on how much the individual interacts with other members of the organization and how much information about the organization that particular individual receives over time.

Research limitations/implications

The generalizability of the simulation study's findings may be expanded if similar studies are carried out incorporating factors that mark differences in individuals, groups, organizations, sectors, industries, cultures, and geographies.


The existing literature on how contingent employees identify with an organization does not adequately provide a process‐based view of the phenomenon. This study extends and complements literature on contingent workers by emphasizing the social construction of time in and from memory throughout the process of organizational identification.



Ekmekci, O. and Casey, A. (2011), "Computer simulation exploring organizational identification for contingent workers", Team Performance Management, Vol. 17 No. 5/6, pp. 279-298.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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