Improving public sector knowledge sharing through communities of practice

Rasmus Jørgensen, Kasper Edwards, Enrico Scarso, Christine Ipsen

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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Abstract

Purpose: This paper aims to study the impact of intentionally developed communities of practice (CoPs) on knowledge sharing and practice improvement in an administrative public sector organisation (PSO). Design/methodology/approach: A case study approach was used to analyse the impact of the CoPs intentionally developed by four different teams at a Danish PSO. The study applied a CoP development framework suggested by the literature to develop the CoPs. Findings: Three out of the four CoPs were successfully developed, and they positively affected knowledge sharing and practice improvement. CoP participants engaged in conversations to explore individual ways of working, share knowledge and ultimately improve practice. Standardisation and boundary spanning were identified as contextual factors influencing the CoP activities. Research limitations/implications: The findings verify the framework and contribute to a better understanding of the factors affecting the development of CoPs that positively impact knowledge sharing and practice improvements in a PSO context. Practical implications: The study provides operations managers in PSOs with a framework for developing CoPs to improve work performance through better knowledge sharing among employees. Originality/value: The paper provides case study evidence for the relevance of CoPs in PSO settings and highlights the necessity of investing resources in employee knowledge-sharing interactions.
Original languageEnglish
JournalVINE Journal of Information and Knowledge Management Systems
Volume51
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)318-332
Number of pages15
ISSN2059-5905
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Keywords

  • Knowledge sharing
  • Community of practice
  • Public sector organizations
  • CoP
  • Practice improvement

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