Minority dissent and team innovation: the importance of participation in decision making

Carsten K.W. De Dreu, Michael A. West

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study integrates research on minority dissent and individual creativity, as well as team diversity and the quality of group decision making, with research on team participation in decision making. From these lines of research, it was proposed that minority dissent would predict innovation in teams but only when teams have high levels of participation in decision making. This hypothesis was tested in 2 studies, 1 involving a homogeneous sample of self-managed teams and 1 involving a heterogeneous sample of cross-functional teams. Study 1 suggested that a newly developed scale to measure minority dissent has discriminant validity. Both Study 1 and Study 2 showed more innovations under high rather than low levels of minority dissent but only when there was a high degree of participation in team decision making. It is concluded that minority dissent stimulates creativity and divergent thought, which, through participation, manifest as innovation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1191-1201
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Applied Psychology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • minority dissent
  • individual creativity
  • team diversity
  • group decision making
  • team participation
  • decision making
  • innovation
  • creativity
  • divergent thought


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