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Identifying Organizational Knowledge Paths through Social Network Lens: Synthesis of Multi-Industry Case Studies

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5 Author(s)

Unlike the common belief that knowledge flows mainly along the formal organizational hierarchy, recent research has pointed out an informal social network among organizational members as a more potent source of organizational knowledge paths. Most of the previous studies examining the organizational knowledge flows, however, have been conducted in a single organization or industry setting, thus limiting the generalizability of their findings. Through the use of social network lens, this paper identifies organizational knowledge flow paths, examines knowledge flow network structures, and analyzes the knowledge flow patterns based on individual case studies from six organizations in different industries. Based on these findings, seven propositions are derived for future research. In addition, it suggests implications for KM practitioners and scholars interested in finding, nurturing, and utilizing knowledge flow networks embedded in organizations.

Published in:

System Sciences, 2009. HICSS '09. 42nd Hawaii International Conference on

Date of Conference:

5-8 Jan. 2009