Knowledge Sharing, Sustained Relationships and the Habitus
This article explores knowledge-sharing tendencies among individuals in a UK project-based organization. While the knowledge management literature extensively considers the significant impact of relationships and trust on sharing knowledge, the underlying reasoning behind individual choices to share knowledge and expertise largely remains an underexplored area. Bourdieu’s conception of the habitus is used as an alternative tool to interpret individual dynamics and their propensity for sharing knowledge given their personal relationships. Data are drawn from in-depth interviews conducted across the organization and presented as a narrative indicative of relationship dynamics of individual actors. The findings suggest that individual predisposition towards knowledge sharing is influenced by experiences in sustained relationships, coupled with awareness of knowledge sources, expectations of reciprocity in relationships, and acceptance into social groups. Particularly, the predisposing nature of the habitus serves as guide to location and utilization of knowledge sources as well as on choices to share personal knowledge.
Citation : Obembe, D. (2012) Knowledge sharing, sustained relationships and the habitus. Management Learning, 44 (4), pp. 355-372
Research Institute : Centre for Enterprise and Innovation (CEI)
Peer Reviewed : Yes