The prime aim of this paper is to provide some understanding of the most important factors affecting active participation behaviour in Business-to-Business Online Communities (B2B OCs).Towards achieving this goal, this study proposed a theoretical framework underpinned by two well-known theories: Social Exchange Theory (SET) and Uses and Gratification theory (U&G). The proposed framework was further explored and tested using semi structured interview with twelve members of B2B OCs. The collected data was analysed using thematic analysis utilizing NVIVO. The analysis results indicate that two SET factors (reciprocity and trust) and two U&G factors (reputation/status and functional factors) can be seen as important elements for promoting active participation behaviour in B2B OCs. The qualitative nature of this study and exploring the proposed framework with only twelve participants, limit the generalisation of this study outcomes to the wider B2B OC population. However, a future study will be conducted in order to empirically test the framework.
Gharib, Rebwar; Philpott, Elly; and Duan, Yanqing, "Active Participation In Business-To-Business Online Communities: A Conceptual Framework" (2014). UK Academy for Information Systems Conference Proceedings 2014. 26.