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The influence of team psychological safety on team knowledge creation: a study with French and American engineering teams

Peter Cauwelier (Institute for Knowledge and Innovation Southeast Asia (IKI-SEA), Bangkok University, Bangkok, Thailand)
Vincent Michel Ribiere (Institute for Knowledge and Innovation Southeast Asia (IKI-SEA), Bangkok University, Bangkok, Thailand)
Alex Bennet (Mountain Quest Institute, Marlinton, West Virginia, USA)

Journal of Knowledge Management

ISSN: 1367-3270

Article publication date: 24 June 2019

Issue publication date: 14 August 2019

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore the impact of team psychological safety and team learning on the creation of team knowledge. When teams engage in learning, their interactions contribute to improved performance. Very little research evaluates whether the learning also creates new knowledge related to the task or the team itself.

Design/methodology/approach

The proposed model is evaluated through a mixed method research design around a team problem-solving experiment. Task- and team-related team mental models are elicited using concept mapping and questionnaires and are measured before and after the experiment. The model is evaluated in engineering teams from the USA and France.

Findings

The findings confirm the proposed model; team psychological safety and team learning positively impact team knowledge creation for both task- and team-related knowledge.

Originality/value

This research has theoretical, methodological and practical implications. The team psychological safety model is expanded, team learning is evaluated from the team interactions instead of members’ self-assessments and team knowledge is measured dynamically. Developing team psychological safety and creating team learning opportunities positively impacts the team’s knowledge.

Keywords

Citation

Cauwelier, P., Ribiere, V.M. and Bennet, A. (2019), "The influence of team psychological safety on team knowledge creation: a study with French and American engineering teams", Journal of Knowledge Management, Vol. 23 No. 6, pp. 1157-1175. https://doi.org/10.1108/JKM-07-2018-0420

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2019, Emerald Publishing Limited