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The effects of the relational dimension of social capital on tacit and explicit knowledge sharing: a mixed-methods approach

Rosangela F. Santos (PPGAd, Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre-RS, Brazil)
Mírian Oliveira (PPGAd, Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre-RS, Brazil and Advance/CSG, ISEG, Universidade de Lisboa, Lisboa, Portugal)
Carla Curado (Advance/CSG, ISEG, Universidade de Lisboa, Lisboa, Portugal)

VINE Journal of Information and Knowledge Management Systems

ISSN: 2059-5891

Article publication date: 1 February 2021

Issue publication date: 2 January 2023

464

Abstract

Purpose

Knowledge sharing among individuals from different teams is rare. Agile methods encourage only the exchange of tacit knowledge within teams. This study aims to analyse the influence of trust, norms of cooperation and reciprocity on tacit and explicit knowledge sharing among individuals from different software development teams.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were collected using a cross-sectional survey involving 205 individuals working in software development teams. The authors adopted a mixed-methods approach involving partial least squares structural equation modelling (PLS-SEM) and fuzzy-set qualitative comparative analysis (fsQCA).

Findings

PLS-SEM shows: the antecedents have different influence in tacit knowledge sharing (TKS) and in explicit knowledge sharing (EKS); trust influences directly TKS, and it only influences EKS indirectly, while reciprocity influences TKS directly and EKS both directly and indirectly; norms of cooperation directly influence TKS, and they only influence EKS indirectly. Overall, the fsQCA findings support PLS-SEM results: TKS contributes to EKS; reciprocity or trust is a sufficient condition for TKS and EKS; norms of cooperation are a sufficient condition for TKS; larger firms without high levels of reciprocity and trust cannot expect TKS and EKS. The quantitative and qualitative results are aligned.

Research limitations/implications

The results cannot be generalisable because snowball sampling was used, and most of the respondents were Brazilians.

Practical implications

This study should help managers and scholars: to appreciate the relevancy of TKS among individuals using agile methods to nurture EKS and to understand the different effects of reciprocity, trust and norms of cooperation on both TKS and EKS.

Originality/value

Considering three constructs, this study uses a mixed-methods approach to investigate the potential of the relational dimension of social capital theory to leverage TKS and EKS, to overcome the limitations of agile methods. The originality of this study regards that it shows the constructs of relational social capital influencing TKS and EKS differently.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors are grateful for the support provided by CAPES (Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior – Brazil), CNPq (Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico – Brazil) and FCT – Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia (Portugal), national funding through research grant UIDB/04521/2020.

Citation

Santos, R.F., Oliveira, M. and Curado, C. (2023), "The effects of the relational dimension of social capital on tacit and explicit knowledge sharing: a mixed-methods approach", VINE Journal of Information and Knowledge Management Systems, Vol. 53 No. 1, pp. 43-63. https://doi.org/10.1108/VJIKMS-05-2020-0094

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2021, Emerald Publishing Limited

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