Person-to-person knowledge sharing is considered a key aspect of any effective collaboration. Many studies have investigated what motivates team members to share knowledge, but few have explored the role trust plays in knowledge seeking and acceptance. We conducted an empirical field study to investigate trust in distributed teams and its influence on knowledge seeking and acceptance practices in a Fortune 500 organization. Our main objective in this study was to investigate what factors determine who will be sought when knowledge is needed, and what the criteria are for knowledge acceptance in person-to-person knowledge sharing. Study findings provide a substantial understanding of knowledge-seeking practices, knowledge-acceptance needs, and the role trust plays in these practices and needs. In this paper, we discuss these findings and their implications on future tool support. © 2011 IEEE.
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