CCE Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award

2019

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

College of Computing and Engineering

Advisor

Inkyoung Hur

Committee Member

Yair Levy

Committee Member

Ling Wang

Abstract

Global Software Development (GSD) team members engage in intellectual activities that involve sharing business domain knowledge and technical knowledge across geographical areas, which is crucial to the successful development of software. In global software development, media choice may influence how virtual teams create and share knowledge. As digital technology advances and organizations become more digitally transformed, current communication theories for media selection lack the explanation to the complicated phenomena with the use of advanced media technologies. There have been many studies focused on the effectiveness of media, but they did not include user’s understanding of system security and its influence on knowledge sharing behavior. However, affordance theory explains the utility with both social actors and technical features. The use of media may be shaped by features of technologies and user’s perception on system security.

The goal of this study was to empirically assess the effects of media affordances and media security awareness on knowledge sharing behaviors among GSD team members with the lens of affordance theory. In this study, data was collected through survey from 214 GSD employees, after inviting 1000 employees to participate. The survey data was analyzed to test the effects of communication media affordance and user’s awareness of media security on behavior in knowledge sharing. The analysis results show that awareness of media security had significant moderating effects on the relationships from some actualized media affordances to implicit knowledge sharing. The results of this study revealed positive relationships between perceived media affordances and actualized media affordances. The results also showed that organization tenure had a significant effect on implicit knowledge sharing, and professional tenure had a significant effect on explicit and implicit knowledge behavior. This study contributed to the body of knowledge in organizational communication literature by providing new insights into how technology properties and users’ awareness on technology security shape team members’ knowledge sharing practice.

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