Keynote Speakers


GibbsJennifer L. Gibbs

Professor, Organizational Communication and Technologies, 
University of California Santa Barbara, USA

"Rethinking Virtuality in a Digital Media Age" 


Scholars have studied virtuality in teams and organizations for over two decades. The term “virtual” is often used loosely and imprecisely, and theoretical debates have flourished over what differentiates virtual from non-virtual teams. In these debates, scholarship has not explicitly considered the significant ways in which the technological landscape has changed over this time. While the virtual is often treated as a separate space from “real”, physical or face-to-face interaction, the increasing technological saturation of our lives has resulted in a blurring of online and offline worlds such that these distinctions may no longer hold up. This talk will discuss whether the term “virtuality” still has currency and the ways in which we must rethink our underlying assumptions about virtuality in a digital media age. 


Jennifer Gibbs (PhD, University of Southern California) is a Professor in the Department of Communication at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Her research focuses on collaboration in global teams and other distributed work arrangements, as well as the affordances of new technologies such as social media for strategic communication practices. She recently published a book entitled Distracted: Staying Connected without Losing Focus, as well as publishing over 40 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters. Her work has been published in leading journals from a variety of disciplines including Administrative Science Quarterly, American Behavioral Scientist, Communication Research, Computers in Human Behavior, Human Relations, The Information Society, Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, Journal of Social & Personal Relationships, Management Communication Quarterly, and Organization Science. Professor Gibbs is currently Editor of Communication Research and was formerly an Associate Editor for Management Communication Quarterly, as well as serving on the editorial boards of a number of other top-tier communication and management journals. 

VandenhooffBart J. Van den Hooff
Professor of Organizational Communication and Information Systems,
VU University Amsterdam, The Netherlands


"Digital Knowledge Collaboration: Tensions in Enterprise Social Media Use in Organizations"


Organizations are increasingly adopting Enterprise Social Media (ESM) technologies to facilitate knowledge collaboration (i.e., the transfer, accumulation, transformation and co-creation of knowledge) among employees. Collaborative platforms like ESM seem to offer new possibilities for knowledge collaboration by facilitating the relevant knowledge processes (such as adding to, recombining, modifying, and integrating knowledge) and raising awareness of existing and possible connections and expertise within organizations. In this presentation, I will discuss various empirical studies that each shed a different light on the tensions that play a role in ESM use in organizations. I will address subjects like the importance of a (perceived) critical mass of connections and content, the crucial role of the embeddedness of a collaborative platform in users’ daily practices, the different affordances and institutional logics that play a role in ESM use, the role of visibility and transparency, and the balance between bottom-up dynamics and top-down governance in determining the contribution of ESM (and similar tools) to knowledge collaboration in organizations. 


Bart van den Hooff is Professor of Organizational Communication and Information Systems at the KIN Research Group of the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. He has a PhD (with honors) in Communication from the University of Amsterdam. He is also the Chair of the Organizational Communication Division of ICA (2016-2018). Before coming to the VU University, he worked in consultancy (M&I/Partners), at the Delft University of Technology and the University of Amsterdam. His research interests include online interaction and collaboration, complexity in Information Systems, Business-IT alignment at different levels, and the use of mobile devices. His work has been presented at international conferences and published in (among others) MIS Quarterly, Journal of Management Studies, Organization Studies, , Communication Research, Human Communication Research, Journal of Information Technology, and the European Journal of Information Systems.