The Impact of Role Coordination on Virtual Team Performance and Player Retention in Esports

Agnes Yang, De Liu, Radhika Santhanam

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Multiplayer online battle arena games provide a valid laboratory for studying virtual-teams behavior. Despite the surging attention on virtual team collaboration, little attempts have been made to identify which factor facilitates role coordination or how role coordination affects team outcomes, although when people are collaborating virtually, coordination based on their roles can be of great help for effective teamwork. Therefore, in this first preliminary study, in our larger program of study on Role Coordination and Team Games, we examine the relationship between role coordination and team performance, player retention in highly virtual teams. Using detailed 3.59 million match data from Defense of the Ancients 2 (Dota 2), where a match-making system is engineered to encourage players to collaborate, we devise a novel measure of role coordination based on rank aggregation by the Bradley-Terry model. We report evidence that role coordination is positively associated with team performance and player retention. We further indicate that familiarity among team members facilitates role coordination. These findings have implications for the literature on virtual teams and games as well as game companies, developers, and players about how to facilitate role coordination.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Role of e-Business during the Time of Grand Challenges - 19th Workshop on e-Business, WeB 2020, Revised Selected Papers
EditorsAravinda Garimella, Prasanna Karhade, Abhishek Kathuria, Xiao Liu, Jennifer Xu, Kexin Zhao
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media Deutschland GmbH
Number of pages8
ISBN (Print)9783030794538
StatePublished - Jun 26 2021
Externally publishedYes
Event19th Workshop on e-Business, WeB 2020 - Virtual, Online
Duration: Dec 12 2020Dec 12 2020

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Business Information Processing
ISSN (Print)1865-1348
ISSN (Electronic)1865-1356


Conference19th Workshop on e-Business, WeB 2020
CityVirtual, Online

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, Springer Nature Switzerland AG.


  • Competition
  • Esports
  • Familiarity
  • Role coordination
  • Virtual team


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