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Keywords:

  • free-riding;
  • organizational citizenship behavior;
  • team cognition;
  • team morale;
  • team performance

Abstract

This study focuses on a behavioral perspective to examine the detrimental effects of free-riding on team performance, and investigates team morale as a key factor that counteracts the tendency of free-riding among team members. Results of the empirical test imply that enhancing team morale can effectively reduce the scale of free-riding behavior in project teams; in addition, controlling team size also provides help to constrain the undesired behavior. The two means can be carefully applied to project management during early stages of project development before the commitment of significant resources. Implications for both research and team practices are discussed.