Structural Dimension

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Following Nahapiet and Ghoshal’s (1998) theoretical model, communities of practice (social capital) are defined in terms of three distinct dimensions: comprised structural, relational, and cognitive. Among the most important facets of the structural dimension is the presence or absence of social interaction ties between actors (Scott, J. 1991). Among the most key facets of the relational dimension are trust (Cohen, D. & Prusak 2001), norm of reciprocity (Putnam 2000), and identification (Nahapiet & Ghoshal 1998). Among the most key facets of the cognitive dimension is shared vision (Cohen, D. & Prusak 2001; Tsai & Ghoshal 1998). • Social interaction ties Tsai and Ghoshal (1998) conceptualise social interaction ties (network ties) as channels for information and resource flows. Granovetter (1973) describes network tie strength as a combination of the amount of time, the emotional intensity, and intimacy (mutual confiding), and the reciprocal services that characterise the network tie. In this study, social interaction ties represent the strength of the relationships, and the amount of time spent, and communication frequency among members of community. Nahapiet and Ghoshal (1998, p. 252) argue that “the fundamental proposition of the Social Capital Theory is that network ties provide access to resources”. Larson (1992) and Van de Ven (1986) note that the more social interactions undertaken by exchange partners, the greater the intensity, frequency, and breadth of knowledge exchanged. Knowledge is important in providing a basis for action but is costly to obtain. The social interaction ties among members of a community allow a cost-effective way of accessing a wider range of knowledge sources. Nahapiet and Ghoshal (1998... ... middle of paper ... ...shared vision embodies the collective goals and aspirations of the members of an organization. A shared vision is viewed as a bonding mechanism that helps different parts of an organization to integrate or to combine resources. Organisation members who share a vision will be more likely to become partners sharing or exchanging their resource (Tsai & Ghoshal 1998). Communities are groups of people brought together by common interest and goals. Cohen and Prusak (2001) argue that shared values and goals bind the members of human networks and communities, make cooperative action possible, and finally benefit organizations. The common goals, interests, visions that members of a community share will help them see the meaning of their knowledge management. Thus, the hypothesis is: H3f: The more that individuals shared vision, the greater will be their KM activities.
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