Purpose - The objective of this study is to investigate the factors of two sub-processes – knowledge donating and knowledge collecting – of knowledge sharing in Hong Kong higher education context. This study examines the individual factors, organizational factors and technology factor of knowledge sharing. Individual factors include enjoyment in helping others and knowledge self-efficacy while organizational factors refer to the top management support, organizational rewards and organizational culture. The use of technology system is proposed to be the technology factor.Design/methodology/approach - Based on the literature review, this study develops a structural model representing the impact of six latent variables on knowledge donating and knowledge collecting processes Data from a questionnaire survey of 166 respondents from academics from Hong Kong higher education sector was used to analyze the model. PLS-SEM was adopted in this study.Findings - The result of the data analysis suggests enjoyment in helping others has a positive impact on both knowledge donating and knowledge collecting. For organizational factors, a trust and collaborative culture enhance both the sub-processes. The technology factor only contributes to the knowledge donating process. Several practical implications are provided to high education leaders, for instance, by establishing a trust and collaborative environment, academics are more eager to donate and collect knowledge.Originality/value - This paper provides insights for researchers to further understand how individual, organizational and technology factors affect two sub-processes of knowledge sharing. On the practical side, this study validated several critical factors to successful knowledge donation and knowledge collection. Copyright © 2020 Emerald Publishing Limited.