Date of Completion


Embargo Period



Teams; Team Social Capital; Shared Leadership; Network Ties; Shared Mental Models; Action Learning; Self-Managed Teams; Team Decision-Making; Critical Incident Technique; Network Analysis

Major Advisor

Robin Grenier Ph.D.

Associate Advisor

Alexandra Bell Ph.D.

Associate Advisor

Marijke Kehrhahn Ph.D.

Field of Study

Adult Learning


Doctor of Philosophy

Open Access

Open Access


As organizational structures have flattened and business environments have become more complex, many organizations have turned to self-managed project teams to effectively accomplish organizational objectives. Research shows that shared leadership and team social capital are important attributes of self-managed project teams. The purpose of this qualitative case study was to explore how team internal social capital developed through participation in an integrated leadership development intervention. Activities designed to build team social capital were integrated into the project team’s work, and data were gathered through artifacts, reflection questionnaires, interviews and observation. Data analysis involved social network analysis and the inductive analysis of artifact, interview and reflection data.

Analysis of the study data revealed that as members of a self-managed project team participated in an integrated leadership development intervention, four aspects of team social capital— Knowledge Sharing Network Ties, Team Mental Models, Situation Mental Models, and Influence Reciprocity Network Ties—emerged. The study resulted in two conclusions: (a) team internal social capital develops in response to intervention activities that are integrated into the work of self-managed project teams when these teams have the appropriate organizational support; and (b) shared leadership, which manifests itself through patterns of Influence Reciprocity Network Ties across team decision events, relies on the development and interaction of multiple aspects of team internal social capital. The results of this study provide adult learning professionals with insights and strategies that support the development of team internal social capital and expand shared leadership capacity within the organization.