[Air-l] road warriors and teleworkers

Nicole Ellison nellison at athena.csustan.edu
Sun May 26 13:41:26 PDT 2002

My impression, based on the telework literature I've seen, is that there is
no real consensus among researchers as to definitions of telecommuting or
telework (and hence, the huge disparity in assessments of its
penetration/growth/popularity). Many, myself included, seem to use
"telework" and "mobile work" interchangeably to refer to those who conduct
"work" from multiple places, including their homes, cars, client workspaces,
non-dedicated spaces at their employers, etc. My dissertation studied a
group of network engineers who had no centralized office but rather spent
their time at various client sites (much like Barry's road warriors, only my
subjects had a more limited territory so they drove instead of flew), and I
referred to them as "teleworkers." My impression from Barry's post is that
he uses "telework" to refer primarily to home-based workers (correct me if
I'm wrong). I'm curious as to others' thoughts on this subject.

Additionally, a brief plug: many of the questions Ulla mentioned in her post
will be considered at an NCA panel on telework in New Orleans. We'd love to
see other researchers in this growing area there!


-----Original Message-----
From: air-l-admin at aoir.org [mailto:air-l-admin at aoir.org]On Behalf Of
Barry Wellman
Sent: Sunday, May 26, 2002 9:04 AM
To: aoir list
Cc: Bunz, Ulla K
Subject: [Air-l] road warriors and teleworkers

Ulla's post to the list made many useful comments, but there are only some
equivalences between teleworkers and road warriors. (I speak as someone
studying teleworking.) Road warriors have no fixed work address for much
of the week. Therefore, their communication and community situations are


  Barry Wellman        Professor of Sociology       NetLab Director
  wellman at chass.utoronto.ca   http://www.chass.utoronto.ca/~wellman

  Centre for Urban & Community Studies        University of Toronto
  455 Spadina Avenue   Toronto Canada M5S 2G8   fax:+1-416-978-7162

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