Multiteam systems in an agile environment: a realist systematic review

John Robert Turner, Nigel Thurlow, Rose Baker, David Northcutt, Kelsey Newman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to highlight a collaborative effort between academia (University of North Texas, Team Sciences) and practice (Toyota Connected (TC)). This study concentrated on current problems that had been experienced by TC: How to structure and manage multiteam systems (MTSs)? Design/methodology/approach: This research study utilized a realist systematic review to address an existing problem by working collaboratively with TC and academia. This collaboration involved problem identification, the development of research questions and a full systematic review guided by the research questions. Findings: This realist systematic review merged the literature with current practices at TC in an effort to gather evidence to support the best method of structuring and managing MTSs. The findings include a leadership structure that incorporates both shared leadership (bottom-up) and existing hierarchical structures (top-down). Practical implications: The MTS models presented in this study provide new models for organizations/manufacturers/industries to use as a guide when structuring their MTSs. Originality/value: This study provides an example of a collaborative research effort between practice and academia using a realist systematic review. The paper also provides some multiteam system models that could be implemented and tested in different organizations. Also, new responsibilities and roles for scrum and MTSs are presented as a new method of achieving Agile.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)748-771
Number of pages24
JournalJournal of Manufacturing Technology Management
Issue number4
StatePublished - May 21 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Strategy and Management
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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