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Organizational Learning: A Social Network Perspective Open Access

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The purpose of this quantitative study was to examine how social network structure affects organizational learning. The site studied was a research and development organization that assists its clients with solving their challenging problems. This quantitative study was based on social network theory, organizational learning theory, and their intersection. A survey administered online was the primary source of data.The study drew four conclusions from the findings: (1) at the individual level socialization opportunities exist; (2) at the group level opportunity exists to create social interactions that facilitate “shared meaning and understanding” (Crossan et al., 1999, p. 528); (3) intragroup connections are more prevalent than intergroup connections; and (4) sufficient network concentration must exist for learning at the organization level.This study provided a theoretical contribution to understanding how social networks that exist within organizations could aid in identifying structures that support learning, thereby supporting an organization’s ability to adapt and change. It was found that social networks had a positive effect on organizational learning, particularly at the organization level, while partial support for learning was found at the individual and group levels.

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