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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Jump to: navigation, search Knowledge Management (KM) comprises a range of strategies and practices used in an organization to identify, create, represent, distribute, and enable adoption of insights and experiences. Such insights and experiences comprise knowledge, either embodied in individuals or embedded in organizational processes or practice. An established discipline since 1991 (see Nonaka 1991), KM includes courses taught in the fields of business administration, information systems, management, and library and information sciences (Alavi & Leidner 1999). More recently, other fields have started contributing to KM research; these include information and media, computer science, public health, and public policy. Many large companies and non-profit organizations have resources dedicated to internal KM efforts, often as a part of their 'business strategy', 'information technology', or 'human resource management' departments (Addicott, McGivern & Ferlie 2006). Several consulting companies also exist that provide strategy and advice regarding KM to these organizations. Knowledge Management efforts typically focus on organizational objectives such as improved performance, competitive advantage, innovation, the sharing of lessons learned, integration and continuous improvement of the organization. KM efforts overlap with organizational learning, and may be distinguished from that by a greater focus on the management of knowledge as a strategic asset and a focus on encouraging the sharing of knowledge. KM efforts can help individuals and groups to share valuable organizational insights, to reduce redundant work, to avoid reinventing the wheel per se, to reduce training time for new employees, to retain intellectual capital as employees turnover in an organization, and to adapt to changing environments and markets (McAdam & McCreedy 2000) (Thompson & Walsham 2004).
1 History 2 Research o 2.1 Dimensions o 2.2 Strategies o 2.3 Motivations o 2.4 Technologies o 2.5 Knowledge managers 3 See also 4 References o 4.1 Notes
formal apprenticeship. Thomas H. the future of knowledge management (Davenport 2008). knowledge repositories. and measurement (Morey. the KM discipline has . and computer supported cooperative work have been introduced to further enhance such efforts. with increased use of computers in the second half of the 20th century. and incentives are essential to accelerate the learning process and to drive cultural change. More recently. concrete. knowledge management programs can yield impressive benefits to individuals and organizations if they are purposeful. when Scandia hired Leif Edvinsson of Sweden as the world¶s first Chief Knowledge Officer (CKO). intranets. This line of evolution is termed Enterprise 2. Key lessons learned included: people. the concept of Knowledge Management has evolved towards a vision more based on people participation and emergence. In 2001. and application. social. Thomas A. corporate libraries. Stewart. Davenport (Babson College) and Baruch Lev (New York University). Hirotaka Takeuchi (Hitotsubashi University). early collections of case studies recognized the importance of knowledge management dimensions of strategy.0 is just a fad that does not bring anything new or useful or whether it is. professional training and mentoring programs. It was initially supported solely by practitioners. CKOs became interested in not only practical but also theoretical aspects of KM. and the new research field was formed. former editor at FORTUNE Magazine and subsequently the editor of Harvard Business Review. are the single most critical resource for successful knowledge creation. the term personal knowledge management was introduced which refers to the management of knowledge at the individual level (Wright 2005). started investigating various sides of KM long before that.  Research KM emerged as a scientific discipline in the earlier 1990s. there is an ongoing debate and discussions (Lakhani & McAfee 2007) as to whether Enterprise 2. In terms of the enterprise. such as Ikujiro Nonaka (Hitotsubashi University). and measurement. discussion forums. However.0. In 1999. Hubert Saint-Onge (formerly of CIBC. Canada). The KM ideas taken up by academics. indeed.y 5 External links  History KM efforts have a long history. Maybury & Thuraisingham 2002). The objective of CKOs is to manage and maximize the intangible assets of their organizations. specific adaptations of technologies such as knowledge bases. cognitive. benchmarking. process. Since its establishment.0 (McAfee 2006). to include on-the-job discussions. expert systems. group decision support systems. In short. More recently with the advent of the Web 2. and the cultures that influence their behaviors. and organizational learning processes are essential to the success of a knowledge management strategy. published a cover story highlighting the importance of intellectual capital of organizations. and action-oriented. dissemination. Gradually.
approaches vary by author and school. Different KM schools of thought include various lenses through which KM can be viewed and explained. A broad range of thoughts on the KM discipline exists with no unanimous agreement. Tacit knowledge represents internalized knowledge that an individual may not be consciously aware of.  Dimensions Different frameworks for distinguishing between knowledge exist. in a form that can easily be communicated to others. One proposed framework for categorizing the dimensions of knowledge distinguishes between tacit knowledge and explicit knowledge. Structure. At the opposite end of the spectrum. McDermott & Synder 2001) social network analysis intellectual capital (Bontis & Choo 2002) information theory (McInerney 2002) complexity science constructivism (Nanjappa & Grant 2003) The practical relevance of academic research in KM has been questioned (Ferguson 2005) with action research suggested as having more relevance (Andriessen 2004) and the need to translate the findings presented in academic journals to a practice (Booker. to include: y y y y y y community of practice (Wenger. there is a trend towards higher cooperation among academics. knowledge. academic debates have increased regarding both the theory and practice of KM. explicit knowledge represents knowledge that the individual holds consciously in mental focus. Ecological with a focus on the interaction of people. ideally those that enhance knowledge sharing and creation. (Alavi & Leidner 2001). the role of practitioners has changed. Technology (or) Culture. depending on the specific perspective (Spender & Scherer 2007). and environmental factors as a complex adaptive system akin to a natural ecosystem. Their contribution to academic research has been dramatically declining from 30% of overall contributions up to 2002. to only 10% by 2009 (Serenko et al. particularly. there has been a drop in single-authored publications. Processes. identity. to include the following perspectives: y y y Techno-centric with a focus on technology. As the discipline matures. First. Bontis & Serenko 2008).been gradually moving towards academic maturity. 2010). Regardless of the school of thought. Subsequent research into KM suggested that a distinction between tacit . Early research suggested that a successful KM effort needs to convert internalized tacit knowledge into explicit knowledge in order to share it. Technology. but the same effort must also permit individuals to internalize and make personally meaningful any codified knowledge retrieved from the KM effort. Second. such as how he or she accomplishes particular tasks. core components of KM include People. Organizational with a focus on how an organization can be designed to facilitate knowledge processes best.
knowledge follows a cycle in which implicit knowledge is 'extracted' to become explicit knowledge. such as a database. Collaborative environments such as communities of practice or the use of social computing tools can be used for both knowledge creation and transfer. it must be translated into information (i. innovation) vs.knowledge and explicit knowledge represented an oversimplification and that the notion of explicit knowledge is self-contradictory. Internalization) which considers a spiraling knowledge process interaction between explicit knowledge and tacit knowledge (Nonaka & Takeuchi 1995). Later on. One strategy to KM involves actively managing knowledge (push strategy). More recently.. or after KM-related activities. Different organizations have tried various knowledge capture incentives. This is also commonly known as the Codification approach to KM. Externalization. together with Georg von Krogh.. expert individual(s) can provide their insights to the particular person or people needing this (Snowden 2002). Ikujiro Nonaka proposed a model (SECI for Socialization. In such an instance.e. Combination. for knowledge to be made explicit. during. the transfer or exploitation of "established knowledge" within a group. and explicit knowledge is 're-internalized' into implicit knowledge. symbols outside of our heads) (Serenko & Bontis 2004). A second proposed framework for categorizing the dimensions of knowledge distinguishes between embedded knowledge of a system outside of a human individual (e. Nonaka returned to his earlier work in an attempt to move the debate about knowledge conversion forwards (Nonaka & von Krogh 2009). Specifically. Considerable controversy exists over whether incentives work or not in this field and no consensus has emerged. In this model. This is also commonly known as the Personalization approach to KM. Another strategy to KM involves individuals making knowledge requests of experts associated with a particular subject on an ad hoc basis (pull strategy). In such an instance. as well as retrieving knowledge they need that other individuals have provided to the repository. organization.e. or community.g. an information system may have knowledge embedded into its design) and embodied knowledge representing a learned capability of a human body¶s nervous and endocrine systems (Sensky 2002). including making content submission mandatory and incorporating rewards into performance measurement plans.  Strategies Knowledge may be accessed at three stages: before. A third proposed framework for categorizing the dimensions of knowledge distinguishes between the exploratory creation of "new knowledge" (i.. individuals strive to explicitly encode their knowledge into a shared knowledge repository. Other knowledge management strategies and instruments for companies include: y y y y rewards (as a means of motivating for knowledge sharing) storytelling (as a means of transferring tacit knowledge) cross-project learning after action reviews .
  Technologies Early KM technologies included online corporate yellow pages as expertise locators and document management systems.) knowledge repositories (databases.) measuring and reporting intellectual capital (a way of making explicit knowledge for companies) knowledge brokers (some organizational members take on responsibility for a specific "field" and act as first reference on whom to talk about a specific subject) social software (wikis. social bookmarking. . as well as create consensus on what elements of KM help determine the success or failure of such efforts (Wilson 2002).y y y y y y y y y y y y y knowledge mapping (a map of knowledge repositories within a company accessible by all) communities of practice expert directories (to enable knowledge seeker to reach to the experts) best practice transfer knowledge fairs competence management (systematic evaluation and planning of competences of individual organization members) proximity & architecture (the physical situation of employees can be either conducive or obstructive to knowledge sharing) master-apprentice relationship collaborative technologies (groupware. etc. Typical considerations driving a KM effort include: y y y y y y y y Making available increased knowledge content in the development and provision of products and services Achieving shorter new product development cycles Facilitating and managing innovation and organizational learning Leveraging the expertise of people across the organization Increasing network connectivity between internal and external individuals Managing business environments and allowing employees to obtain relevant insights and ideas appropriate to their work Solving intractable or wicked problems Managing intellectual capital and intellectual assets in the workforce (such as the expertise and know-how possessed by key individuals) Debate exists whether KM is more than a passing fad. bookmarking engines. blogs. though increasing amount of research in this field may hopefully help to answer this question. Combined with the early development of collaborative technologies (in particular Lotus Notes).)  Motivations A number of claims exist as to the motivations leading organizations to undertake a KM effort. etc. etc. KM technologies expanded in the mid-1990s.
made wisely and that the most appropriate technologies and software tools are selected or combined to facilitate knowledge management. Organizations and business decision makers spend a great deal of resources and make significant investments in the latest technology. (December 2009) "Knowledge manager" is a role and designation that has gained popularity over the past decade. blogs.Subsequent KM efforts leveraged semantic technologies for search and retrieval and the development of e-learning tools for communities of practice (Capozzi 2007). or matrixed organizations. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. It is imperative that these investments are validated properly. These tools face challenges in distilling meaningful re-usable knowledge and ensuring that their content is transmissible through diverse channels(Andrus 2005). It may be combined with Quality. development of social computing tools (such as bookmarks. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. and thus represent explicit knowledge transfer. these knowledge management software tools have the advantage of using the organization existing information technology infrastructure. self-governing or ecosystem approaches to the transfer. processes. branding & marketing and collaborative technology. More recently. . learning. systems and infrastructure to support knowledge management. Furthermore. including the development of new forms of communities. and wikis) have allowed more unstructured.  Knowledge managers This section does not cite any references or sources. Knowledge management has also become a cornerstone in emerging business strategies such as Service Lifecycle Management (SLM) with companies increasingly turning to software vendors to enhance their efficiency in industries including. Software tools in knowledge management are a collection of technologies and are not necessarily acquired as a single software solution. Knowledge management functions are associated with different departments in different organizations. Operations etc. and is likely to be determined by the KM motivation of that particular organization. the aviation industry. networks. Innovation. reuse. Knowledge managers have varied backgrounds ranging from Information Sciences to Business Management. but not limited to. capture and creation of knowledge. collaboration and innovation. The role has evolved drastically from that of one involving the creation and maintenance of knowledge repositories to one that involves influencing the culture of an organization toward improved knowledge sharing. An effective knowledge manager is likely to be someone who has a versatile skills portfolio and is comfortable with the concepts of organizational behavior/culture. However such tools for the most part are still based on text and code. Sales. HR.
In this case. while KM is often facilitated by IT. the golfer ² having derived a benefit from the caddie's advice ² may be more likely to play that course again. Once the best advice is collected. caddies get bigger tips and deals on merchandise. such as. When asked. The end result of a well-designed KM program is that everyone wins. Good caddies do more than carry clubs and track down wayward balls. It's important to note that the definition says nothing about technology. there's no universal definition of knowledge management (KM). Succinctly put. How would KM work to make this happen? The caddie master may decide to reward caddies for sharing their tips by offering them credits for pro shop merchandise. For this reason. generating value from such assets involves codifying what employees. On the flip side. KM is the process through which organizations generate value from their intellectual and knowledge-based assets. . " Accurate advice may lead to a bigger tip at the end of the day. If a good caddie is willing to share what he knows with other caddies. and sharing that information among employees. a good caddie will give advice to golfers. technology by itself is not KM. it's best to think of KM in the broadest context. "The wind makes the ninth hole play 15 yards longer. Most often. partners and customers know. and distribute them to all the caddies. just as there's no agreement as to what constitutes knowledge in the first place. departments and even with other companies in an effort to devise best practices. then they all may eventually earn bigger tips. and the course owners win because better scores lead to more repeat business. golfers play better because they benefit from the collective experience of caddies.What is knowledge management (KM)? Unfortunately. Think of a golf caddie as a simplified example of a knowledge worker. the course manager would publish the information in notebooks (or make it available on PDAs).
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