Document Type Master's Dissertation Author Zaaiman, Sophia Maria URN etd-04012010-140925 Document Title The existence and form of social networks in organisations Degree MBA Department Gordon Institute of Business Science Supervisor
Advisor Name Title Prof M Sutherland Supervisor Keywords
- social networks
Date 2007-04-07 Availability unrestricted Abstract
The concept of social networks has emerged as a new direction in the theory of organisational behaviour. Informal networks are widely understood to contribute to innovation, collaboration and learning in organisations. Competitive advantage, or social capital from social networks, can greatly aid an organisation in the business environment. The purpose of this research project was to establish whether and in what form social networks existed in South African organisations.
Based on the literature review three research questions were developed. In this quantitative research project surveys were conducted in various companies using paper questionnaires. Eighty respondents reported on five of their own contacts providing a contact profile batch of 400 people. Equal numbers of people of different race and gender completed the questionnaire. Descriptive and comparative statistics were used to analyse the data.
Importantly the results showed that almost half of the employees felt excluded from social network participation in their companies. Homophily was identified as a strong divider that caused race based networking. Gender was found to be not so strong a divisive factor as anticipated. Despite an abundance of networking biases, a diverse network-context knowledge sharing model was developed.
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Please cite as follows:
Zaaiman, SM 2006, The existence and form of social networks in organisations, MBA dissertation, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, viewed yymmdd < http://upetd.up.ac.za/thesis/available/etd-04012010-140925/ >
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