[Air-L] call for papers on organizations and social network sites

Charles Steinfield steinfie at msu.edu
Mon Jan 17 15:59:23 PST 2011

Dear Colleagues,
For those of you interested in research on social network sites in  
organizational settings, please consider submitting your work to the  
following workshop.  Please forward to colleagues working on this  
topic.  We look forward to hearing from you!
Charles Steinfield and Marleen Huysman

Call for Papers
A Workshop On “Organizations and Social Network Sites”
International Conference on Communities and Technologies
Brisbane, June 29 – July 2, 2011

Social network sites (SNS) are increasingly being used in  
organizational settings to improve relationships among employees and  
enhance prospects for information exchange and cooperative work.  The  
bulk of the research on SNS, however, focuses on their use by young  
people and students. While this work has produced significant insights  
into user behaviors and impacts of SNS use, more work that takes into  
account the organizational context is needed. Hence, this workshop  
will bring together researchers examining SNS use in organizations.

SNS use in organizational settings may differ in important ways from  
student use. For example, people using a workplace SNS may use it in  
more instrumental and goal oriented ways, based on organizational  
requirements. There may be less uninhibited humor and playful content,  
less self-disclosure and self-presentation, depending on the  
organizational cultural context, if users know that supervisors are  
viewing SNS interactions. Information sharing may be more difficult  
due to concerns about proprietary data. These differences may lead to  
different outcomes from SNS use in organizational settings than have  
been observed among students and young people.

Studies of SNS use in the workplace suggest that this is an emerging  
and fertile area of work that is beginning to attract a community of  
researchers. Case studies of Facebook and LinkedIn use in the workpace  
reveal the tensions that are created when work and home networks  
collide. Among the awkward situations generated by what is coming to  
be known as “context collapse” are when competing clients friend the  
same salesperson, or when a manager asks to be friends with  
subordinates.  The user faced with such situations may be unable to  
refuse the requests, and has to alter usage behavior or risk  
alienating important clients or reveal information that may cause his  
or her standing at work to be diminished.

Some companies, particularly large technology companies, have created  
their own internal SNS software.  A series of studies of IBM’s Beehive  
system (now known as Social Blue) reveals that such sites can attract  
large numbers of employees from around the world, can aid in  
socialization of new employees, and can enhance employees’ access to  
new people and sources of expertise around the company.

In addition to the private and internally developed systems like  
Beehive, a host of competing enterprise social network site providers  
such as Yammer, SocialText, INgage Networks, NewsGator, Spigit, and  
other vendors have rushed to provide products for this emerging market.

If you are investigating any aspect of the development, use, and  
impacts of social network sites in organizational settings, we invite  
you to submit a paper to this workshop, which will be held in  
conjunction with the Fifth International Conference on Communities and  
Technologies (C&T 2011) in Brisbane, Australia on June 29, 2011.

Suggested Topics
We will encourage paper submissions that address the development, use,  
and impacts of social network software in organizational settings.   
Social science research is particularly welcomed.

Topics include, but are not limited to:
- Case studies of public and private SNS in the workplace
- Tensions between work and non-work use of public SNS
- Identify management in organizational SNS
- Consumer behavior and SNS
- Expertise sharing and SNS
- Social capital at work and SNS
- SNS as a tool for organizational socialization
- ‘Digital natives’ entering corporate world and its effect on SNS use
- Organizational learning and SNS use
- Business communities and SNS
- Global organizations, cross cultural issues and SNS

Key Dates
- April 1: Submission of an extended abstract (1500 words). Full  
papers are also acceptable.
- April 15, acceptance notifications sent out
- June 1, final papers due (7000-10,000 words)
- June 29, workshop

Author Guidelines
Extended abstracts and/or papers should be written in English and  
submitted via email to the workshop organizers at steinfie at msu.edu and mhuysman at feweb.vu.nl 
. Extended abstracts should be approximately 1500 words, while final  
papers should be between 7000 and 10,000 words, including references,  
tables, figures, and footnotes.  Manuscripts should follow APA style  
guidelines for citations and formatting.

Publication Prospects
After the workshop, several papers will be selected and invited for  
submission for a journal publication. Presently we are in discussions  
with the Journal of Computer Mediated Communication about the  
possibility of a special issue on this topic. If the special issue is  
approved, all papers will undergo a double-blind review at the  
journal. However, we will work with the authors of selected papers to  
revise their papers to increase the likelihood of acceptance at JCMC.

Workshop Organizers
Charles Steinfield, Michigan State University (steinfie at msu.edu)
Marleen Huysman, VU University Amsterdam (mhuysman at feweb.vu.nl)

Charles Steinfield
Professor and Chair
Department of Telecommunication, Information Studies, and Media
Michigan State University
East Lansing, MI  48824  USA

email: steinfie at msu.edu
tel: +1 517 355 8372

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