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An Experimental Investigation of Information Sharing. Daphne Raban Graduate School of Business University of Haifa draban@univ.haifa.ac.il. Presentation Outline. Why study information sharing? Explanations for reduced sharing Theories Information ownership

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an experimental investigation of information sharing

An Experimental Investigation of Information Sharing

Daphne Raban

Graduate School of Business

University of Haifa

draban@univ.haifa.ac.il

presentation outline
Presentation Outline
  • Why study information sharing?
  • Explanations for reduced sharing
  • Theories
  • Information ownership
  • Research question and variables
  • Hypotheses
  • Experiment
  • Results
  • Discussion

University of Haifa

why study information sharing
Why StudyInformationSharing?
  • Integral part of work and business
  • A significant application of IS
  • Contrasting sharing behaviors

University of Haifa

explanations of reduced sharing
Explanations of Reduced Sharing
  • Information ‘commons’ invite the ‘tragedy of the commons’, free riding
    • Database-mediated sharing(Connolly and Thorn, 1990)
    • Interpersonal sharing(Constant, Kiesler et al., 1994)
  • Too much effort required
  • Asymmetry

University of Haifa

theories
Theories
  • Communality(Fulk and Flanagin, 1996; Wasco and Faraj, 2000)
  • Pro-social transformation(Constant, Kiesler et al., 1994)
  • Critical mass(Constant, Kiesler et al., 1994)
  • Diffusion of responsibility(Barron and Yechiam, 2002)
  • Leadership(Butler, Sproull et al., in press)
  • Perception of ownership(Jarvenpaa and Staples, 2000 & 2001)

University of Haifa

information ownership
Information Ownership
  • Uneven ownership may create free riding(Adar and Huberman, 2000), OTOH, when ownership is even is sharing needed?
  • Ownership and self-enhancement (Heider, 1958; Beggan, 1992)
  • No transfer of rights
  • Ownership is not clear – an opportunity for framing by IS
  • Is free riding all that bad in IS?

University of Haifa

research question and variables
Research Question and Variables
  • How can system-induced ownership status influence sharing?
  • IV: ownership status (3 levels)
  • DV: willingness to share (WTS)

University of Haifa

research hypotheses
Research Hypotheses
  • H1: WTS for privately-owned expertise will be higher than WTS information depicted as an organizationally-owned document
  • H2: WTS for a privately-owned document will be higher than WTS for information depicted as an organizationally-owned document

University of Haifa

the experiment
The Experiment

University of Haifa

results
Results
  • 173 participants, 3 treatments, each received one public and one private request for information.

University of Haifa

results of 2 tests
Results of χ2 Tests
  • H1: WTS for privately-owned expertise will be higher than WTS information depicted as an organizationally-owned document

University of Haifa

results of 2 tests1
Results of χ2 Tests
  • H2: WTS for a privately-owned document will be higher than WTS for information depicted as an organizationally-owned document

University of Haifa

further analysis
Further Analysis
  • A McNemar test showed a significant difference between WTS for personal and public requests for help (p<0.03)
  • There was no significant difference for WTS of expertise and private document

University of Haifa

discussion
Discussion
  • WTS was significantly higher for expertise and private document than for organizational document
  • WTS was significantly higher for private requests than for public requests
  • A simple system-induced depiction of ownership created a significant difference in WTS
  • Lack of difference between expertise and private document indicates ownership has more influence than information source

University of Haifa

discussion1
Discussion
  • No problem in using the IM application: a total of 262 personal message and 484 public messages were posted
  • 13% of the personal messages were WTS
  • 4% of the public messages were WTS
  • Sharing induced more by personal appeal
  • Public channel used more to ‘broadcast’ than to interact
  • Possible diffusion of responsibility in the public channel

University of Haifa

conclusion and future research
Conclusion and Future Research
  • A simple system-induced depiction of ownership created a significant difference in WTS
  • Why are people more inclined to broadcast information publicly but share information more in private?
  • Do people who participate more also help more?
  • Is information sharing perceived as a solution to information overload or to information deficiency?
  • What is the interplay between information sharing, searching and purchasing?

University of Haifa

slide17

Thank you for listening!

draban@univ.haifa.ac.il