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Ee Changshun Andrew (Jan 2012 intake) Supervisor: Assoc Prof Jung Younbo , WKWSCI Co-Supervisor: Prof Nadia Thalmann , IMI. Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion. MMORPGs & Society.

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slide1

EeChangshun Andrew (Jan 2012 intake)

Supervisor: Assoc Prof Jung Younbo, WKWSCI

Co-Supervisor: Prof Nadia Thalmann, IMI

slide2

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

slide3

MMORPGs & Society

The MMORPG market: A shining star in the computer games industry

Impact on society, especially youth, becomes increasingly important

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

slide4

MMORPGs & Leadership

MMORPGs foreshadow new possibilities for effective leadership

Skills and values leaders need to cope with the effects of a changing society = Skills and values of MMORPG players

Players may transfer leadership skills honed in MMORPGs to offline contexts as they become tomorrow’s leaders

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Rationale for Study

To examine leadership development in MMORPGs

Previous studies largely offer ‘prescriptions’ based on generalised notions of leadership

Theoretical frameworks used: Social Cognitive Theory + Sloan Leadership Model

Data source: 20 MMORPG player interviews

Theoretical frameworks used: +

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Conventional qualities of effective leadership in MMORPGs

Qualities of effective leadership in MMORPGs

Attempts to integrate other leadership taxonomies within a single framework

All 4 competencies found in MMORPG leadership (Reeves et al., 2007)

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Unique qualities of effective leadership in MMORPGs

Qualities of effective leadership in MMORPGs

MMORPG leadership also possesses unique aspects of leadership not readily found in real-life situations (DeMarco et al., 2007; Jang & Ryu, 2010)

In many traditional businesses, people are appointed to managerial positions for months or years, they are not encouraged to take risks, they have time to make decisions, and most people have only limited opportunities to practice leadership. In online games, the opposite of these things is true. (Reeves et al., 2007, p. 19)

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Qualities of effective leadership in MMORPGs

Since both types of leadership qualities are found in MMORPGs, we need to know how they are developed within the context of MMORPGs as well

Studies have proponed the facilitative properties of MMORPG environments on leadership development (Chen, Duh, & Hong, 2008; Reeves et al., 2007)

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

slide10

Bandura’s (1986) Social Cognitive Theory

SCT: A valid way to understand MMORPG leadership development from a social psychological angle

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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McCormick’s (2001) SCT-applied Leadership Model

Considers only generalised notions of leadership

Self-efficacy

Goals

KSAs

Task Strategy

Development

Experiences

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Research Objective

To examine MMORPG leadership development by focusing on how Sloan Leadership competencies are developed in MMORPGs through the lenses of SCT (and consequently SCT-applied leadership models)

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Research Questions

RQs endeavoured to examine the role of each of the 3 SCT factors on MMORPG leadership development

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Research Questions

RQ1: How does the game environment and context players are situated in help to foster their leadership qualities (in terms of Visioning, Relating, Sensemaking, and Inventing) in MMORPGs?

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Research Questions

RQ2: How do players' individual characteristics help to foster their leadership qualities (in terms of Visioning, Relating, Sensemaking, and Inventing) in MMORPGs?

RQ2a

RQ2b

Self-efficacy

KSAs

Experiences

RQ2c

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Research Questions

RQ3: How do the actions of players in MMORPGs help to foster their leadership qualities (in terms of Visioning, Relating, Sensemaking, and Inventing) in MMORPGs?

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Semi-Structured Interviews

World of Warcraft (WoW) used as the context for the interview questions

WoW players possessing at least 1 WoW avatar of level 30 recruited via convenience and snowball sampling

20 participants recruited:

13 males and 7 females aged 21-28

17participants had at least 1 avatar of level 80

5 “Guild Leaders,” 7 “Guild Officers”, 8 ‘guild’ members

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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4 Sloan Leadership capabilities in the context of WoW (Reeves et al., 2007)

Sharing visions and ideas with other ‘guild’ members

Understanding changes to the internal and external contexts in which a ‘guild’ operates and helping ‘guild’ members to understand them

Building intra-‘guild’ and inter-‘guild’ relationships

Co-ordinating task and strategy execution among other ‘guild’ members

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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The messages can be quite overwhelming

Participant 19

What matters is how much your thoughts contribute to the ‘guild’s’ interests

Participant 9

It’s very easy to share game updates since we can just cut-and-paste information from the WoW wiki or forum boards

Participant 3

RQ1: How does the game environment and context players are situated in

help to foster their leadership qualities in MMORPGs?

Two types of environments: Game Environment, Social Environment

Game Environment: Not important for developing Visioning; may afford or/and hinder development of other 3 capabilities

Game Environment has reciprocal influence on behaviour and personal factors

Social Environment: Can influence behaviour and personal factors which, in turn, help develop all 4 capabilities

It takes more courage and confidence to organise real-life ‘guild’ meetups. I’ll be so embarassed if no one turns up!

Participant 7

The game interface is very user-friendly and helps co-ordinate ‘instances’ better. For example, our leader will tell us which enemy to kill first by using icons to mark the kill order

Participant 20

How can I know a person better if I can’t even tell when he’s happy or sad?

Participant 6

Some members may be very shy, so hiding behind a blanket of anonymity actually helps them to socialise better

Participant 12

Playing as ‘tanks’ is good learning ground for leaders because they have to protect everyone else from taking damage

Participant 11

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

slide23

RQ2a: How do players' self-efficacy help to foster their leadership

qualities in MMORPGs?

Self-efficacy helps to foster Inventing but not so for the other 3 capabilities

Self-efficacy translates to being confident in one’s abilities and consequently making one more assertive, which is important for players to develop Inventing

Self-efficacy becomes important for all 4 capabilities when ‘guild’ leadership is taken offline

Being confident [with regards to non-Inventing behavioural examples] or not doesn’t really matter as long as you’ve got something to say that’s important to the ‘guild’. However, command and control [Inventing] is different because you’re the one everyone needs direction from lest the team gets ‘wiped’

Participant 4

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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RQ2b: How do players' knowledge, skills, and abilities help to foster

their leadership qualities in MMORPGs?

KSAs are important for Inventing

Participants without ‘guild’ authority: KSAs are not so important for developing other 3 capabilities

Participants with ‘guild’ authority: KSAs are important for developing other 3 capabilities

Participants with ‘guild’ authority: KSAs are important in developing all 4 capabilities where management of day-to-day affairs of ‘guilds’ is concerned

Beating a difficult ‘instance’ becomes second nature after running through it [as well as] similar types of ‘instances’ a few times, with good leaders knowing exactly what to do and how to co-ordinate member actions

Participant 13

How can you apply the same knowledge and skills to resolve conflict between members [Relating] when every situation should be handled case-by-case?

Participant 5 (‘Guild’ member)

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

slide25

RQ2c: How do players' prior experiences help to foster their leadership

qualities in MMORPGs?

Each participant cited at least one example in explaining how his/her past experiences proved beneficial towards developing the all 4 capabilities

The co-ordinator tricked us into fighting an optional ‘boss’ and we were caught unawares because we’ve not played that ‘instance’ before. Quite a few of us were ‘wiped’. Since then, I’ve vowed not to cheat others because it sucks. Don’t do unto others what you don’t want them to do unto you, right?

Participant 20 recalling a particularly bad experience of task and strategy co-ordination (Inventing)

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Research Question 3: How do the actions of players in MMORPGs

help to foster their leadership qualities in MMORPGs?

Behaviour is important for developing all 4 capabilities

This importance stems from the influence of behaviour on the other 2 factors of SCT that are directly responsible for the development of these 4 capabilities which, in turn, influence future behaviour

By fostering care and concern among ‘guild’ members, members will be more responsive to each others’ needs, even if they’re talking about their offline worries

Participant 8

I was chatting on the ‘vent’ when it was supposed to be used for leader-member communications. People started ticking me off. With time and experience, I’ve learnt when to use the ‘vent’ and when to shut up and listen

Participant 17

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

slide28

In Summary

Findings generally support the triadic reciprocality of Bandura’s (1986) SCT and McCormick’s (2001) SCT-applied leadership model:

3 main factors of SCT are important for developing Inventing

Social Environment, Past Experiences (as a Personal Factor), and Behaviour are important for developing all 4 capabilities

However, there are some “special cases” as well…

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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In Summary

Self-efficacy more important for developing non-Inventing capabilities when ‘guild’ leadership is taken offline

KSAs more important for developing non-Inventing capabilities for “Guild Officers” and “Guild Leaders”

Game Environment has mixed effect on developing of non-Visioning capabilities

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Limitations

Affective personal factors given less significance

Data collection:

Accuracy in recall of experiences and self-reporting of behaviour

Participants’ interpretation of interview questions

Interviews focused on in-game experiences

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Looking into the future…

MMORPG leadership research has not fully comprehended how MMORPG leadership skills are developed:

Use different research methods and/or samples to test findings

Examine how players’ offline experiences reinforce in-game leadership development

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion

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In Conclusion…

Thank You! 

Introduction | Literature Review | Research Objectives Methodology | Findings & Analysis | Discussion | Conclusion