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Investigating NASA's intergroup decision-making: Groupthink and intergroup social dynamics

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Abstract:

On August 26, 2003 the members of the independent panel investigating the February 1, 2003 Columbia shuttle explosion released their report and recommendation to the public. The report focused not only on the physical cause for the accident, a large piece of foam that tore into the shuttle wing, it describes a dysfunctional intergroup culture of decision-making at NASA. The information made public through the investigation report, press and television interviews, and various other reports available through the media provides convincing evidence that NASA has a culture where groupthink flourishes. Groupthink is a term coined by Irving Janis to describe a phenomenon of faulty decision-making. This occurs when a group is deeply involved in a cohesive in-group and the members' striving for unanimity override their motivation to rationally appraise alternative courses of action. The evidence of an on-going culture of groupthink at NASA is investigated by comparing different reports produced through independent panels that reported on the Columbia shuttle disaster.

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nasa (128), decis (69), shuttl (67), make (56), 2003 (53), decision-mak (49), groupthink (48), intergroup (39), manag (39), group (30), report (30), avail (27), columbia (27), wald (27), www.nytimes.com (26), onlin (26), investig (25), space (24), problem (23), mission (23), juli (22),

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Groupthink, NASA, decision-making
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Name: International Communication Association
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MLA Citation:

Ferraris, Claire. "Investigating NASA's intergroup decision-making: Groupthink and intergroup social dynamics" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Communication Association, New Orleans Sheraton, New Orleans, LA, May 27, 2004 <Not Available>. 2009-05-26 <http://www.allacademic.com/meta/p112767_index.html>

APA Citation:

Ferraris, C. L. , 2004-05-27 "Investigating NASA's intergroup decision-making: Groupthink and intergroup social dynamics" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Communication Association, New Orleans Sheraton, New Orleans, LA Online <.PDF>. 2009-05-26 from http://www.allacademic.com/meta/p112767_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: On August 26, 2003 the members of the independent panel investigating the February 1, 2003 Columbia shuttle explosion released their report and recommendation to the public. The report focused not only on the physical cause for the accident, a large piece of foam that tore into the shuttle wing, it describes a dysfunctional intergroup culture of decision-making at NASA. The information made public through the investigation report, press and television interviews, and various other reports available through the media provides convincing evidence that NASA has a culture where groupthink flourishes. Groupthink is a term coined by Irving Janis to describe a phenomenon of faulty decision-making. This occurs when a group is deeply involved in a cohesive in-group and the members' striving for unanimity override their motivation to rationally appraise alternative courses of action. The evidence of an on-going culture of groupthink at NASA is investigated by comparing different reports produced through independent panels that reported on the Columbia shuttle disaster.

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Document Type: .PDF
Page count: 23
Word count: 5932
Text sample:
NASA’S INTERGROUP DECISION-MAKING 1 Running Head: NASA’S INTERGROUP DECISION-MAKING INVESTIGATING NASA’S INTERGROUP DECISION-MAKING: GROUPTHINK AND INTERGROUP SOCIAL DYNAMICS Claire Ferraris and Western Oregon University NASA’S INTERGROUP DECISION-MAKING 2 Abstract On August 26 2003 the members of the independent panel investigating the February 1 2003 Columbia shuttle explosion released their report and recommendations to the public. The report focuses not only on the physical cause for the accident a large piece of foam that tore into the shuttle wing it
J. (2003 July 12). NASA management failings are linked to shuttle NASA’S INTERGROUP DECISION-MAKING 23 demise [online]. Available: http://www.nytimes.com/2003/07/12/national/12SHUT. Wald M.L. & Schwartz J. (2003 July 23). Alerts were lacking NASA shuttle manager says [online]. Available: http://www.nytimes.com/2003/07/23/national/nationalspecial/23SHUT. Wald M.L. & Schwartz J. (2003 August 4). Shuttle inquiry uncovers flaws in communication [online]. Available: http://www.nytimes.com/2003/08/04/science/04SHUT. Wheeler L. (2003 July 23). Shuttle decision is defended. Statesman Journal 4A. Whyte G. (1989). Groupthink reconsidered. Academy of Management Review 14 (1) pp. 40-56.


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