Examining micro-level knowledge sharing discussions in online communities

G. Alan Wang, Xiaomo Liu, Jianling Wang, Min Zhang, Weiguo Fan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Online communities of practice have become a popular knowledge source for both individuals and organizations. It is important to understand how to facilitate virtual knowledge sharing in online communities. Existing studies generally focus on system design factors or motivations behind knowledge sharing behavior. In this study we aim to investigate the knowledge sharing processes in online communities and identify process patterns that are indicative of effective knowledge sharing processes. We propose a computational framework to examine individual knowledge sharing processes in online communities from a process perspective. Our empirical evaluations show that effective knowledge sharing processes have distinct structural characteristics and communication network patterns compared to unhelpful knowledge sharing processes. Our research findings have practical implications for online community practitioners.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1227-1238
Number of pages12
JournalInformation Systems Frontiers
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Communication network
  • Computer-mediated communication
  • Knowledge sharing
  • Network structural analysis
  • Online community

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • Information Systems
  • Computer Networks and Communications


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