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An investigation of factors affecting knowledge sharing amongst UK academics

Rowley, JE and Fullwood, R (2017) An investigation of factors affecting knowledge sharing amongst UK academics. Journal of Knowledge Management, 21 (5). pp. 1254-1271. ISSN 1367-3270


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Purpose The purpose of this paper is to construct and investigate relationships between knowledge-sharing factors, attitude and the intention to share of UK academics, as research on knowledge sharing in higher education is extremely sparse. Design/methodology/approach A research model and hypotheses were constructed from individual and organisational factors that were identified to affect knowledge sharing. Questionnaire data were obtained from 367 academics concerning their attitude and intention towards knowledge sharing. This was then used in a two-stage structural equation modelling approach where the measurement model was used for confirmatory factor analysis. The structural model was used to measure and test the hypothesised relationships. Findings Findings indicate that, in general, individual beliefs amongst academics were more influential on their knowledge-sharing attitudes than organisational culture. Furthermore, leadership was the most influential factor within the overall organisational culture whereas autonomy demonstrated the weakest relationship. Belief in the possibility of rewards through associations was found to be a highly significant individual factor. The relationship between attitude and intention was relatively weak although still statistically significant. Originality/value The research demonstrates that management should ensure that departmental leaders promote knowledge sharing and that valued rewards are linked to sharing within the department.

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