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Social, organizational, political, and economic influences shape the creation, use, ownership, and governance of knowledge networks. These influences have a combined, interactive effect on the information and knowledge sharing processes in government (and other organizations as well). Rapid evolution of network telecommunication technologies and growing pressures to share information and work in collaborative ways have led to great interest in the successful development of knowledge networks.

This three-year research project, supported by the National Science Foundation, investigates seven initiatives led by New York State and local agencies. These initiatives depend on sharing knowledge and information across multiple organizations.

This study examines the formation and operation of knowledge networks in the public sector, exploring the dimensions of success and how organizational, technological, and political factors influence outcomes. The study has developed an enhanced model of knowledge network formation and operation in the public sector. In addition, this research has resulted in recommendations to practitioners about planning and implementing knowledge networks.