Diverse effects of team diversity: a review and framework of surface and deep-level diversity

Alana E. Jansen*, Ben J. Searle

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: While diversification within organisations is seen by many to be a strategic move, there is conflicting evidence about what makes diverse teams successful. The purpose of this paper is to highlight a range of complex, and in some cases contradictory, research contributions towards several key areas of diversity within teams, and to propose a framework for integrating existing approaches and clarifying inconsistencies in this domain. 

Design/methodology/approach: A literature review was conducted to explore several key areas of surface and deep-level diversity in teams, with the discussion included in this paper highlighting many of the inconsistencies and complexities associated with this research domain. 

Findings: This review highlights the need for future research to look at the effects of surface and deep-level diversity simultaneously, over time, across multiple levels and with a broad range of contextual moderators, to examine their impact on a range of outcomes. 

Originality/value: In order to account for the complexities within diversity research, the authors propose the use of the job demands-resources (JDR) model which suggests possible explanations for inconsistent findings and bridges the gap between commonly used theoretical perspectives.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1838-1853
Number of pages16
JournalPersonnel Review
Issue number9
Early online date8 Nov 2021
Publication statusPublished - 3 Dec 2021


  • mixed methodologies
  • diversity
  • team performance
  • team dynamics
  • team(s)


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