Since the introduction of the Internet, cyber networks have expanded into new virtual worlds, demanding global cooperation across borders, cultures, time, and space. Social media platforms have enabled consumers to exert increasing influence over business and communities. This experimental research combined appreciative inquiry and design thinking, into a new five-phase, 6-week process (AI.d) and examined its use as a tool for innovative collaboration. Young adults from a globally dispersed spiritual community applied AI.d, using Facebook as a collaborative virtual space. Virtual interaction, collaboration, relationship, goal efficacy, skill building, and innovation were measured. Results were positive: resources were identified and used; ideas were generated, evolved, and executed; a new role (community connector) was defined; and participants initiated their own projects for creating an integrated community. AI.d may be useful for communities and organizations seeking to discover and apply the talents and resources of members as a means to advance innovation.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Research projects (MSOD); Social media; Virtual reality -- Social aspects; Appreciative inquiry; Organizational change

Date of Award


School Affiliation

Graziadio Business School



Degree Type


Degree Name


Faculty Advisor

Egan, Terri;