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Date of this Version

5-15-2021

Abstract

This paper aims to examine the obstacles and enablers of knowledge sharing in development organisations and determine how each factor affects knowledge sharing in different organisations. It also highlights strategies for successful deployment of knowledge sharing techniques.

The paper opted for a mixed-method approach with a sequential explanatory design. Data were collected using semi-structured questionnaires administered to development practitioners (n=331) and in-depth interviews with key informants (n=11).

The paper provides empirical insights on different knowledge sharing barriers and enablers encountered in development organisations. Overall, eight categories of knowledge sharing enablers emerged from the study. These include culture, strategy, reward system, trust, strong social capital, motivating staff, inspirational leadership and training opportunities. The most significant individual challenges included: lack of time to share knowledge, low awareness of the value of sharing knowledge, and cultural differences. Organisational barriers included: poor integration of knowledge sharing, poor organisational leadership, and failure to recognise knowledge-sharing initiatives. The most significant technical obstacles included: lack of integration of ICTs, lack of technical support, and mismatch between individuals’ needs and ICTs. The most significant strategies included getting support from top management, fostering a knowledge sharing culture and developing knowledge sharing policies. Best practices for using ICTs to enhance knowledge sharing included collaboration, providing quality information, management support, using the latest technology and engaging subject matter experts.

This research is valuable in identifying the knowledge sharing barriers and influencers unique to development organisations. By examining and discussing specific facilitators and hindrances encountered by development organisations, this paper contributes to the growing body of literature in knowledge sharing for development.

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