Why it is difficult to get people to share knowledge with others in an organisation

Research Briefing

Keywords: knowledge sharing, knowledge management, evidence-based practice,organisation  size, internal attribution, skills, ability

One of the central planks of both evidence-based practice and knowledge management is the idea of knowledge sharing. Internal knowledge sharing is seen as a key factor in developing an organisation’s competitive advantage. Knowledge sharing gives an organisation the capability of using integrated knowledge, both internal and external, and, by doing so, enables it to create, detect and exploit new opportunities.

A range of previous studies have found that systematic knowledge sharing improves organisational effectiveness, the ability of an organisation to respond quickly to changes in market demand and helps to promote a learning culture across an organisation. Additionally, studies have found that organisations that engage in open knowledge sharing, and have systems and protocols to support this, are also significantly more likely to engage in cooperative and collaborative behaviours within the organisation and it promotes greater employee voice (or the ability of staff at  all levels to speak up when they see problems or issues).

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