Sharing of Knowledge in Public Knowledge Spaces: Influencing Factors
From Virtual Communities
Tejaswini Herath - SUNY Buffalo, G. Lawrence Sanders
In recent years, knowledge sharing on the public domains such as Yahoo answers and Wikipedia has grown dramatically. These sites are allowing the general public to contribute knowledge and more and more web users are turning to each other for answers about everything. These websites have become an important resource for individual internet users. However, it is recognized that one of the critical factors determining a virtual community’s success is its members’ motivation to actively participate in community knowledge generation and sharing activities. The new wave of knowledge sharing on public knowledge spaces calls for research to identify what motivates people to share their very valuable knowledge on these sites when there is little possibility for monetary rewards. In an attempt to understand the factors that may influence this issue, this proposal explores related research. This paper contributes to the literature by investigating social exchange theory, public goods theory and organizational knowledge sharing under one umbrealla to develop a testable theoretical model for knowledge sharing in public knowledge spaces. The integration of these concepts into a unified theory of public knowledge sharing is an important step towards understating this phenomenon.
Knowledge sharing, virtual communities, success factors for public knowledge spaces