Infrastructures of Knowledge Sharing Countrywide

Infrastructures of Knowledge Sharing Countrywide

Leila Nemati-Anaraki (Iran University of Medical Sciences, Iran)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-7536-0.ch022


Knowledge sharing has become a strategic source of gaining and preserving competitive advantage and collaboration between different organizations. Therefore, providing platforms and infrastructure is essential in this process. The method of this chapter is mixed and applied research (first, the author uses literature review and Delphi method, and after that, she does a survey) that was conducted in 2013. The study population was the faculty members of medical universities and research centers in Iran. According to the statistical results, around 17 percent of professors considered the organizational structure as acceptable. There was also a sharing of knowledge and experience of faculties in the 4.82 percent somewhat faculty teaching and research within their organization more than other organizations. From the view of faculties, conferences and forums, with an average rank of 4.93, and personnel exchanges, with the average 4.24, are the most effective ways of sharing. The outcomes of the application will provide an empirical basis for planning and implementing knowledge sharing mechanisms.
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The tendency of countries to admit globalization along with development of information and communication technology, have developed powerful tools to create global networks of education and research (Abel et al., 2007). Activities of the universities in modern days have affected the sole mission of knowledge production and have turned universities into problem-solving service institutes for local, national and global problems. This significant issue duplicates the responsibility of universities on qualitative and quantitative promotion of knowledge sharing. The research and education organizations that utilize the knowledge sharing concepts manage and reinforce their human and organizational capitals through sharing the effective and useful knowledge and promote their knowledge-based capabilities (Hsu, 2008). Knowledge sharing involves a set of common understandings that are created through accessing the organizational information and leads to utilization of knowledge-based networks inside the organization (Hogel, Parboteeah, & Munson, 2003). Several factors are considered in the research conducted to study the factors effective on knowledge sharing. These factors are generally divided in two groups including individual and organizational. On the other hand, the applied studies demonstrate that human and organizational factors and a large number of modern technologies are related to the knowledge sharing process (Huang, Luther, & Tayles, 2007).

Alvani, ZareiMatin and Pashazadeh (2009) identified effective factors in knowledge sharing in their research. One of the factors they identified was technology that involved existence of capabilities of information technology and the amount of utilization of each one of the related tools. The ultimate result after studying elites’ views resulted in identification of the most important factors on information technology arena. Sohrabi et al. (2011) conducted a research titled as “offering a comprehensive model for assessment of knowledge sharing in the state-project organizations on the basis of human, organizational and technical factors”. Application of information technology, accessibility and facilitation of utilization were selected as the subject locutions from among the technical factors. Regarding the obtained statistical results, all the three individual, organizational and technical factors were effective on knowledge sharing.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Knowledge Management: Knowledge management (KM) is the process of capturing, developing, sharing, and effectively using organizational knowledge.[1] AU54: Anchored Object 1 It refers to a multi-disciplined approach to achieving organizational objectives by making the best use of knowledge. “Knowledge management is a discipline that promotes an integrated approach to identifying, capturing, evaluating, retrieving, and sharing all of an enterprise's information assets. These assets may include databases, documents, policies, procedures, and previously un-captured expertise and experience in individual workers.”

Infrastructure: The fundamental facilities and systems serving a country, city, or area, as transportation and communication systems, power plants, and schools. Infrastructure is the basic physical and organizational structure needed for the operation of a society or enterprise, or the services and facilities necessary for an economy to function. It can be generally defined as the set of interconnected structural elements that provide a framework supporting an entire structure of development. It is an important term for judging a country or region's development.

Information Technology: Information technology (IT) is the application of computers and telecommunications equipment to store, retrieve, transmit and manipulate data, often in the context of a business or other enterprise. The term is commonly used as a synonym for computers and computer networks, but it also encompasses other information distribution technologies such as television and telephones. Several industries are associated with information technology, including computer hardware, software, electronics, semiconductors, internet, telecom equipment, e-commerce and computer services Yuan et al. (2013) conclude that although information technology supports the knowledge sharing, there will be a large gap by using the social software between the modern information technologies and the older ones.

Knowledge Sharing: Knowledge Sharing is an activity through which knowledge (i.e., information, skills, or expertise) is exchanged among people, friends, families, communities (e.g., Wikipedia), or organizations. Knowledge management systems help connects workers to knowledge and other people regardless of physical distance. They are wide-ranging and can vary from custom-designed knowledge repositories to web-based systems which comprise discussion forums, file sharing and organization charts, to name but a few features.

Intra-Organizational Knowledge Sharing: Intra-organizational collaboration defines as enduring transactions, flows, and linkages that occur within an organization.

Tools of Knowledge Sharing: ICT tools and other communication channels that use to communicate persons involved in a communication act and knowledge sharing.

Inter-Organizational Knowledge Sharing: Inter-organizational collaboration defines as enduring transactions, flows, and linkages that occur between two or among different organizations. The nature of inter-organizational network lies in the sustained legal connection, common or complementary goals, and common bonds or social relationships among collaborative partners.

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