Social Media & KM in NPOs

My Role: Research Coordinator (2012-2014), Collaborator (on-going)

Status: Data collection and analysis completed. Dissemination of findings is ongoing.

Summary

Knowledge management (KM) involves identifying, creating, storing, organizing and disseminating knowledge in organizations for efficient use of resources. This study seeks to understand how knowledge management and the emergence of social media (e.g. Twitter, Facebook, YouTube; blogs, wikis, etc.) interrelate in non-profit organizations (NPOs). KM has been researched in breadth and depth in FPOs, where it has been demonstrated that KM plays a significant role in the success of these organizations. As knowledge-based organizations, it stands to reason that KM is equally important to non-profits, and yet the sector has received comparatively scant attention in the KM literature. To this end, this study assesses the current state of KM and social media use in small and medium sized non-profit organizations, explores the role of social media in supplementing and facilitating KM practices, and identifies the knowledge needs in these organizations.

This two-year study was funded by a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) of Canada Insight Development Grant. In the first phase of research (2012-2013), 17 exploratory qualitative interviews were conducted with NPOs in Alberta. Based on interview findings, a 30-minute survey questionnaire was developed for the study’s second phase. An online survey of over 2000 registered charities across Canada was conducted in 2013-2014. Once completed, a similar survey was conducted with over 1000 non-profit organizations in Australia (2014). Analysis of results and dissemination of findings is on-going.

Timeline

 

Research Team

Dr. Dinesh Rathi
Principal Investigator
School of Library and Information Studies
University of Alberta
Edmonton, Alberta
drathi.com

Dr. Lisa Given
Co-investigator
School of Information Studies
Research Institute for Professional Practice, Learning and Education (RIPPLE)
Charles Sturt University
Wagga Wagga, NSW, Australia
lisagiven.com

Eric Forcier
Research Coordinator
School of Library and Information Studies
University of Alberta
Edmonton, Alberta
ericforcier.ca

Research Assistants | University of Alberta
Colette Leung (2012)
Siddhartha Bezbaruah (2012)
Sarah Zakordonski (2012-2013)
Sarah Vela (2013)

Publications and Presentations

Dinesh Rathi, Lisa M. Given and Eric Forcier. Interorganisational Partnerships and Knowledge Sharing: The Perspective of Non-Profit Organisations (NPOs). Journal of Knowledge Management, in press. [Link]

Dinesh Rathi, Eric Forcier, Lisa M. Given. Forging the Key: Unlocking Social Knowledge in Non-Profit Organizations. Association for Non-Profit and Social Economy Research (ANSER/ARES) 7th Annual Conference, St. Catharines, Ontario, May 27-29, 2014. [Link] [PDF]

Dinesh Rathi, Lisa M. Given, Eric Forcier, Sarah Vela. Every Task its Tool, Every Tool its Task: Social Media Use in Canadian Non-Profit Organizations. Canadian Association of Information Science (CAIS/ACSI) 42nd Annual Conference, St. Catharines, Ontario, May 28-30, 2014. [Link] [PDF]

Sarah Vela, Eric Forcier, Dinesh Rathi, Lisa M. Given. Disseminating, Assimilating, and Creating: A Social Knowledge Cycle Model for Non-Profit Organizations. Canadian Association of Information Science (CAIS/ACSI) 42nd Annual Conference, St. Catharines, Ontario, May 28-30, 2014. [Link] [PDF]

Dinesh Rathi, Lisa M. Given and Eric Forcier. The Heart of Knowledge: Shifting Paradigms in the Knowledge Management of Non-Profit Organizations, Proceedings of 59th ILA International Conference on Managing Libraries in the Changing Information World: From Surviving to Thriving (Indian Library Association, New Delhi), Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Roorkee, India, p. 681, 2014. [Link] [PDF]

Eric Forcier, Dinesh Rathi and Lisa M. Given. Knowledge Management and Social Media: A Case Study of Two Public Libraries in Canada. Journal of Information and Knowledge Management 12 (4): 1-10, 2013. [Link]

Lisa M. Given, Eric Forcier, Dinesh Rathi. Social Media and Community Knowledge: An Ideal Partnership for Non-Profit Organizations. Association for Information Science and Technology (ASIS&T) Annual Meeting, Montreal, Canada, November 1-6, 2013. [Link] [PDF]

Eric Forcier, Dinesh Rathi and Lisa M. Given. Knowledge Management and Social Media: A Case Study of Two Public Libraries in Canada. 9th International Conference on Knowledge Management (ICKM), Montreal, Quebec, November 1-2, 2013. [Link] [PDF]

Eric Forcier, Dinesh Rathi and Lisa M. Given. Tools of Engagement for Knowledge Management: Using Social Media to Capture Non-Profit Organizations’ Stories. Canadian Association of Information Science (CAIS/ACSI) 41st Annual Conference, Victoria, British Columbia, June 6-8, 2013. [Link] [Slideshare] [PDF]

back to top