Knowledge acquisition: the roles of perceived value of knowledge content and source

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Abstract:

PurposeThis paper seeks to propose the factors that increase or lessen an individual's tendencies to acquire knowledge from others and uncovers the difference between an expert and a novice in the knowledge domain. Design/methodology/approachThe study adopted a survey method and examined hypotheses by applying the structural equation model method. The unit of analysis was an individual. FindingsThe research illustrates that individual knowledge acquisition is influenced by the recipient's perceived value of knowledge content and knowledge source. The influence differs between those who are experts and those who are novices in the acquired knowledge domain. Research limitations/implicationsThe data were collected from organizations that were willing to participate in the study and not randomly selected; the possibility that the samples were atypical of a more general population exists. This study advances theoretical development by highlighting individual knowledge acquisition which fills the gap between two main knowledge management processes, i.e. knowledge transfer and knowledge application. Practical implicationsManagement interest in enhancing knowledge exchange should pay attention to value signals both from knowledge content and knowledge source that influence acquiring knowledge by recipients. Originality/valueBy revealing the value factors associated with individual knowledge acquisition and providing empirical evidence, the study contributes to richer understanding of what should be perceived by potential knowledge recipients in order to enhance their acquiring knowledge from others.

Keywords: Individual behaviour; Knowledge acquisition; Knowledge economy; Knowledge transfer; Learning

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/13673271211262772

Publication date: September 7, 2012

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