Organisations as Social Networks: Understanding Proactive Information Behaviour

Mosindi, Osemeke (2013) Organisations as Social Networks: Understanding Proactive Information Behaviour. Doctoral thesis, Northumbria University.

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Abstract

This study was carried out in the field of information behaviour, which includes information sharing behaviour. The study set out to answer the research question: what are the factors that influence proactive information sharing behaviour in organisations? The aim of the study was to explore in depth, factors that influence proactive information sharing behaviour, and understand the degree to which these factors influence proactive information sharing behaviour. The study provides a unique contribution to research by developing an understanding of factors which influence proactive information sharing behaviour in organisations; the understanding of how these factors are related in context; and the development of tools to identify proactive information sharing behaviour.

The research approach was based on a constructivist philosophical perspective, grounded in information behaviour theories and models. A case study methodology was used to collect rich data specific to each context; three cases, and two organisations were used overall, and data collection was done using mixed methods, to give a holistic understanding. Research techniques were tailored based on a theoretical framework, which included four theories; autopoesis, social network theory, sense making, and appreciative inquiry. Data collected was analysed using the coding method used in grounded theory, going through the stages of open coding, axial coding, and some selective coding.

The key findings were: role responsibility and involvement; reciprocity and trust; open office design, open conversations, and information overload; proactivity and personality; knowledge, experience, and length of time in the organisation; use of technology and resistance to change; organisational objectives, organisational policy, organisational structure, size of group, and lack of resources; enthusiasm, satisfaction / dissatisfaction, low morale, feeling of power, and expectation; difference in objectives between colleagues, personal agenda, and lack of authority.

These factors influence the proactive information behaviour of individuals in organisations, and the influence of each factor is deeply rooted in the specific organisational context. A model of proactive information sharing behaviour was developed in this study, which illustrates and explains how the factors, intervening variables, and context, all combine to influence proactive information sharing behaviour in organisations.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Uncontrolled Keywords: information science, proactive behaviour, social network analysis, complexity, organisational behaviour
Subjects: N100 Business studies
P100 Information Services
Department: Faculties > Engineering and Environment > Computer and Information Sciences
Depositing User: Paul Burns
Date Deposited: 12 Sep 2018 09:00
Last Modified: 26 Oct 2019 08:18
URI: http://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/35667

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