Academic journal article Library Philosophy and Practice

Predicting Knowledge Sharing Behaviour among Non-Academic Staff in University of Ibadan, Nigeria

Academic journal article Library Philosophy and Practice

Predicting Knowledge Sharing Behaviour among Non-Academic Staff in University of Ibadan, Nigeria

Article excerpt

Introduction

In the present world economy, knowledge has become a key resource and very vital for the development and growth of any society. As the modern world economy is increasingly becoming knowledge and information based, knowledge will inevitably serve as the driving force for enhanced productivity, economic growth and performance. Knowledge is one of the main tools and a major economic resource needed for any institution to perform its tasks next to labour, land and capital. Without appropriate knowledge, no task can be performed, even from the simplest to the complex task (Paulin and Suneson, 2012). Thus, organisations that can obtain and apply valid and useful knowledge effectively are generally expected to perform more successfully (Allameh, Pool, Jaberi, and Soveini, 2014). However, to gain competitive advantage, the focus should not simply be on recruiting staff with specific knowledge or skills, but also on sharing knowledge between experts and novices which are already part of the organisation (Wang and Noe, 2010). Bogdanowicz and Bailey (2002) regard knowledge as an asset which has to be valued, developed and shared. The sharing of knowledge between individuals and departments in the organisation is considered to be a crucial process (O'Dell and Grayson, 1998).

It is important to note that data, information and knowledge go hand -in -hand. Data refers to the content or a fact that is to be processed, while information refers to the data communicated or received. Knowledge goes beyond mere information in that information has now been interpreted and processed according to a point of view, preparing the receiver for appropriate actions (Aguolu and Aguolu, 2002). Knowledge is originated from intelligence of individuals and is visible in task systems, procedures, norms and customs which are difficult to imitate.

Knowledge can be classified as explicit or tacit. Nonaka (1994) defined explicit knowledge as knowledge that is formal, systematic and can be codified into records such as databases and libraries. Omotayo (2015) described characterisation of knowledge into explicit and tacit as rather too simple. Omotayo suggested that knowledge is better described as explicit, implicit, and tacit. Explicit means information or knowledge that is set out in tangible form. Implicit means information or knowledge that is not set out in tangible form but could be made explicit, while tacit is information or knowledge that one would have extreme difficulty operationally setting out in tangible form. Omotayo further stated that whether tacit, implicit, explicit or cultural, the most obvious point is to make organisation's data and information available to the members of the organisation. To make it available this has to do with sharing of such information or knowledge to the concerned members in the organisation for effective uses. Knowledge can be considered useful for the society only when it is shared with others, and this leads to knowledge sharing.

Knowledge sharing can be defined as a social interaction culture, involving the exchange of employee knowledge, experience and skills through whole department or organisation. Hogel, Parboteeah and Munson (2003) note that knowledge sharing comprises a set of shared understandings related to providing employees' access to relevant information and building and using knowledge network within organisations. Knowledge sharing occurs at the individual and organisational levels. With regards to the individual level, knowledge sharing is about conversing among colleagues in order to get something done better, efficiently, and perfectly. For the organisational level, knowledge sharing involves sharing experience between seniors and juniors or between top management and their subordinate in order to ensure that they improve their performance and make such knowledge available to the business. According to Alam, Abdullah, Amir Ishak and Mohd Zain (2009), knowledge sharing is a process where employees exchange their knowledge or ideas through discussions to create new knowledge. …

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