Lianghao Dai and Margarete Boos (2017)

How Much Sharing is Enough? Cognitive Patterns in Building Interdisciplinary Collaborations.

In: Social Network Analysis: Interdisciplinary Approaches and Case Studies, ed. by X. Fu, J. Luo, & M.Boos (Eds.), chap. 3, pp. 41-70, NW:CRC-Press.

A social network is made up of nodes and ties (Wasserman and Faust, 1994). The nodes can be individuals, teams, or organizations, while ties represent interper-sonal or interorganizational relationships, like trust, friendships, and investments. Among various scientific research questions related to social network dynamics, one of the most crucial is how people build, maintain, or change ties between them. There exist numerous works in the literature to answer this question. For example, Katz et al. (2004) listed in their review the following five schools of theories that attempt to answer that question: theories of self-interest, theories of social exchange or dependency, theories of mutual or collective interest, cognitive theories, and the-ories of homophily. The cognitive theories that we focus on in this chapter discuss how people’s cognitions of certain relationships, other people, objects, or processes influence their relationship building. By asking how much knowledge sharing is enough for building interdisciplinary collaborations (ICs), the goal of this chapter is to identify the cognitive-based reasons for people from various disciplines to share enough information to build their collaboration ties.