CCE Faculty Articles

Understanding Knowledge Sharing Motivators Within Knowledge Management Initiatives

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Proceedings of the 10th Americas Conference on Information Systems

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This study investigated the phenomenon of knowledge sharing (KS) within a knowledge management (KM) effort. The study sought to identify what motivates employees to participate in KS. The study investigated whether the antecedents of organizational citizenship behavior served as motivators for KS. It also employed research from the areas of impression management and knowledge sharing culture to help understand the sharer’s motivations.

Methodologically, the study used a multi-site, case study approach. Data were elicited via self-administered questionnaires, and in-depth, semi-structured interviews at two large organizations. The study’s findings show multiple motivators engaged respondents at both organizations to partake in KS. While the role of fundamental individual goals in the display and quality of formalized knowledge sharing was identified via the interviews, the role of social exchange and personal/organizational norms in the display of formalized knowledge sharing was identified via the surveys.

The study makes contributions to several existing theories. The study’s findings also had several pragmatic implications for the sharers, developers and designers of KM initiatives, and managers and leaders.

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