Factors Impacting the Behavioral Intention to Use Social Media for Knowledge Sharing: Insights from Disaster Relief Practitioners

Yunis Ali Ahmed, Muhammad Mahboob Khurshid
Interdisciplinary Journal of Information, Knowledge, and Management  •  Volume 18  •  2023  •  pp. 269-300

The primary purpose of this study is to investigate the factors that impact the behavioral intention to use social media (SM) for knowledge sharing (KS) in the disaster relief (DR) context.

With the continuing growth of SM for KS in the DR environment, disaster relief organizations across the globe have started to realize its importance in streamlining their processes in the post-implementation phase. However, SM-based KS depends on the willingness of members to share their knowledge with others, which is affected by several technological, social, and organizational factors.

A survey was conducted in Somalia to gather primary data from DR practitioners, using purposive sampling as the technique. The survey collected 214 valid responses, which were then analyzed with the PLS-SEM approach.

The study contributes to an understanding of the real-life hurdles faced by disaster relief organizations by expanding on the C-TAM-TPB model with the inclusion of top management support, organizational rewards, enjoyment in helping others, knowledge self-efficacy, and interpersonal trust factors. Additionally, it provides useful recommendations to managers of disaster relief organizations on the key factors to consider.

The findings recorded that perceived usefulness, ease of use, top management support, enjoyment in helping others, knowledge self-efficacy, and interpersonal trust were critical factors in determining behavioral intention (BI) to use SM-based KS in the DR context. Furthermore, the mediator variables were attitude, subjective norms, and perceived behavioral control.

Based on the research findings, it was determined that management should create different discussion forums among the disaster relief teams to ensure the long-term use of SM-based KS within DR organizations. They should also become involved in the discussions for disaster-related knowledge such as food supplies, shelter, or medical relief that disaster victims need. Disaster relief managers should consider effective and adequate training to enhance individual knowledge and self-efficacy since a lack of training may increase barriers and difficulties in using SM for KS during a DR process.

The conceptual model, further empirically investigated, can be employed by other developing countries in fostering acceptance of SM for KS during disaster relief operations.

Disaster relief operations can be facilitated using social media by considering the challenges DR practitioners face during emergencies.

In generalizing this study’s findings, other national or global disaster relief organizations should consider, when applying and testing, the research instruments and proposed model. The researchers may extend this study by collecting data from managers or administrators since they are different types of users of the SM-based KS system.

social media, knowledge sharing, determinants, behavioral intention to use, disaster relief, developing country
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