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Knowledge sharing through co‐presence: added value of facilities

Rianne Appel‐Meulenbroek (MB Eindhoven, Eindhoven, The Netherlands)

Facilities

ISSN: 0263-2772

Article publication date: 2 March 2010

2357

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to find suitable measures that facility managers can use to prove the importance of a building for employee behaviour (and thus organizational performance). The amount of knowledge sharing between colleagues is studied, because it influences innovation, which is one of the most important organizational goals these days.

Design/methodology/approach

Knowledge sharing in open plan areas is studied with the help of measures derived from spatial network analysis methods. Data were collected from 138 employees working together in a research building and used to show the effect of co‐presence on the amount of knowledge sharing and the way knowledge is shared.

Findings

Co‐presence explains 12 percent of the variability in the number of knowledge‐sharing meetings. Also the way knowledge is shared differs between people working in co‐presence and people who have separate rooms/areas. Spatial network analysis is an adequate way to describe open plan workplaces.

Originality/value

Previous studies do not define openness in such a way that different open plan layouts can be assessed and compared. This is necessary for facility managers to make grounded decisions. This paper applies a new methodology for these types of studies. Also it studies the effect of facilities on actual knowledge‐sharing activities, and not just on interactions between people.

Keywords

Citation

Appel‐Meulenbroek, R. (2010), "Knowledge sharing through co‐presence: added value of facilities", Facilities, Vol. 28 No. 3/4, pp. 189-205. https://doi.org/10.1108/02632771011023140

Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2010, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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