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Past Issue • Oct-Dec 2009

Knowledge Hoarding

This research article looks at the impact of incentives, personality types and gender on sharing intellectual wealth.

In an increasingly complex and unpredictable world, the development, exploitation and management of knowledge are the keys to building a competitive advantage for modern organisations. Most organisations have formal knowledge management initiatives that consists of information systems designed to hold and distribute codified knowledge. While managing knowledge is ostensibly critical to professional firms, it is implicitly believed that employees will share knowledge if they are provided with adequate infrastructure and incentives (Zack 1999, O’Leary 2002). This research is an attempt to investigate the impact of different personality types, various incentives and the role of gender on ‘knowledge hoarding’. Knowledge acquired during the course of one’s job belongs to the organisation rather than the individual. However, some individuals perceive this as their personal intellectual property and hence do not share it with others in the organisation. This phenomenon of not sharing information is defined as “Knowledge Hoarding”.


  • ISBInsight-Author

    Gaurav Bansal

    Student of the ISB, Class of 2010. Prior to joining the ISB, he was working with a Fortune 500 oil and gas consulting firm.
  • ISBInsight-Author

    Pallavi Malani

    Student of the ISB, Class of 2010. Prior to joining the ISB, she was working as a consultant with a leading consulting firm.
  • ISBInsight-Author

    Sumit Popli

    An alumnus of the ISB, Class of 2009. He is currently working as a management consultant with a leading consulting firm.
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