, Volume 17, Issue 2, pp 351-362
Date: 23 Nov 2013

The role of social media in supporting knowledge integration: A social capital analysis

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Internet of things (IoT) is a current trend that reveals the next generation Internet-based information architecture, the convergence of social networks and IoT solutions is helpful to optimize relationships among objects. In order for IoT to take off in the IT sector, providers and other stakeholders must integrate knowledge successfully. In this study, we investigate the role of social media in supporting knowledge integration from a social capital perspective. Specifically, we propose that social media have the potential to facilitate the formation of employees’ social capital indicated by social networking, trust and shared language. These mediating variables will in turn positively affect knowledge integration. This research frame is validated with survey data collected from 262 Chinese working professionals. The results provide general empirical support for our hypotheses. In analogy with social media for human beings, the future direction of socialization among objects can be inspired by this study.