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Analyzing R&D Knowledge Flows In The Flat World
Whelan, Eoin; Donnellan, Brian; Golden, Willie
Previous research has firmly established the importance of informal social networks in facilitating knowledge flows in research and development (R&D) settings. However, the explosion of Web technologies in recent years have ’flattened’ the planet and dramatically altered our understanding of what constitutes a social network. Despite this, current research has neglected to examine how Web technologies have impacted knowledge flows in R&D. To address this research gap, we revisit the highly influential technological gatekeeper theory. Drawing on social network analysis (SNA) and interview evidence from a medical devices R&D group, we find that the gatekeeper role is still vital, but no longer needs to be performed by a single individual. Instead, the modern R&D group can keep abreast of the latest technological advances through a combination of Web-enabled internal and external communication specialists. A unique contribution this paper makes to the IT-enabled social network literature is the development of an updated conceptual framework of how the gatekeeper role is performed in the modern R&D group.
Keyword(s): Social networks; Knowledge management; Technological gatekeeper; Web technologies; R&D
Publication Date:
Type: Journal article
Peer-Reviewed: Yes
Institution: Maynooth University
Citation(s): Whelan, Eoin and Donnellan, Brian and Golden, Willie (2009) Analyzing R&D Knowledge Flows In The Flat World. Journal of Information Technology Case and Application Research, 11 (2). ISSN 2333-6897
Publisher(s): Taylor & Francis
File Format(s): other
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First Indexed: 2020-04-02 06:13:01 Last Updated: 2020-04-02 06:13:01