The Electronic Journal of Knowledge Management aims to publish perspectives on topics relevant to the study, implementation and management of knowledge management
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Journal Article

KM as a Chemin Faisant: The Valtech Experience  pp13-22

Daniele Chauvel, Charles Despres

© Nov 1999 Volume 1 Issue 1, Editor: Fergal McGrath, pp1 - 68

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Abstract

Valtech is a Paris‑based consulting firm established in 1993 and devoted to e‑business technologies. The company was initially structured as a distributor of new information technologies to the French and European market, which secondarily provided training in the use of its products. Valtech now positions itself as a pure knowledge‑transfer firm that instructs clients in the strategic use and development of cutting‑edge electronic technologies. Valtech organized itself according to KM principles in 1993, but only became aware of KM as a formal organizing framework in 1998. While the adoption of KM is often "pushed" onto companies by the academic or consulting communities, Valtech pulled itself toward KM organizing logics by the New Age of business it defined for itself. It is in this way an excellent example of strategic commitment and organizational design from a KM perspective. It is also relatively unique in that most of the literature records KM adoption from a "push" rather than a "pull" perspective.

 

Keywords: Knowledge Management, knowledge creation, organizational learning, knowledge transfer, case study The proper names that are employed in this text are pseudonyms excepting those of the Company founders, the CKO and the Assets Manager All quotes and interview transcripts are authentic, verbatim and have been validated by the Company

 

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Journal Article

The Midas Touch in Knowledge Management Projects — Beware, Your Wish Could Come True  pp35-44

Alf Westelius, Pär Mårtensson

© Apr 2005 Volume 2 Issue 2, Editor: Charles Despres, pp1 - 44

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Abstract

Like king Midas, the champion of a Knowledge Management (KM) initiative might find herself in an awkward situation because the wish came true. Successful KM initiatives can lead to problems. The case study presented in this article details how a consulting company attempted to support its dispersed staff of consultants through the introduction of a web‑based KM portal. The application became popular — too popular in the sense that it led to a deterioration of certain types of knowledge exchange. It achieved the intended goals, but created unforeseen problems. In the article we explore KM practices and explore the role of contexts for IT‑mediated KM. It is suggested that the need to view IT‑mediated KM in various wider contexts is even more important than in many other forms of IS implementation. The KM activities are not only related to identifiable tasks and work processes, but also to social interaction, learning and other dynamic processes in the organisation.

 

Keywords: knowledge management practices, IS success, electronic communities, knowledge management, knowledge documentation, case study, ba

 

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Journal Article

Measurement of Business Intelligence in a Finnish Telecom‑munications Company  pp83-90

Virpi Pirttimäki, Antti Lönnqvist, Antti Karjaluoto

© Dec 2005 Volume 4 Issue 1, Editor: Charles Despres, pp1 - 90

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Abstract

Business intelligence (BI) is a managerial concept and tool that is used to help organisations to manage busi‑ness information and to make effective decisions. Measurement of BI is generally considered an important issue but at the same time it is considered difficult to carry out in practice. There is also a lack of research on the topic. The paper describes the current knowledge regarding the measurement of BI and makes a contribution on the currently small amount of empirical knowledge on the topic. The research is implemented by means of a literature review and action research.

 

Keywords: Business intelligence, case study, measure, measurement, telecommunications

 

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Journal Article

Knowledge Management and Higher Education: A UK Case Study  pp11-26

Desireé Joy Cranfield, John Taylor

© Oct 2008 Volume 6 Issue 2, ICICKM 2007, Editor: Rembrandt Klopper, pp1 - 116

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Abstract

This paper presents the initial findings of a case study conducted at seven Higher Education Institutions within the United Kingdom. The Case Study utilizes Stankosky's Knowledge Management (KM) pillars to enterprise learning — leadership, organization, technology and learning — as a lens to investigate and understand Knowledge Management practices and perceptions within Higher Education Institutions, looking at challenges of implementation within this sector. Higher Education Institutions within the United Kingdom are very complex institutions, with diverse backgrounds, history, culture, resources and missions. The University presents itself in today's knowledge economy with a dichotomy of priorities, one which aims to provide quality teaching and research activity, and the other, to ensure effective and efficient management and administration within an increasingly competitive market. Being a service, non‑profit organization ensures that the values of scholarship remain a very important aspect of its mission; yet, the external environment within which HEIs conduct their business today is rapidly changing, forcing HEIs to reflect on how they do 'business' given the external pressures they face. This case study uses the Grounded Theory methodology to begin to unpack the issues related to the implementation of Knowledge Management within this context. It focuses on two aspects of the case study — the characteristics of universities and academics that hinder or promote the implementation of KM, and the perceptions of Knowledge Management and its challenges for implementation within the HEI sector. Initial findings are presented.

 

Keywords: knowledge management, UK case study, grounded theory, higher education

 

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Journal Article

The Concept of Knowledge in KM: a Relational Model  pp145-154

Colin Reilly

© Apr 2009 Volume 7 Issue 1, ECKM 2008, Editor: Roy Williams, pp1 - 198

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Abstract

This paper reports progress in research into the applicability of the knowledge management (KM) paradigm to third sector organizations. Case studies and an action research project are described. Although KM techniques are in use, resource priorities, program funding, and dispersed authority inhibit KM in these organizations. There is little intentional consideration of the relationships between the values held by these organizations and the data gathered from experience. A relational knowledge domain model is proposed that shows how knowledge is derived from observing real or imagined universes, is stored in knowledge artifacts, and is operated on by natural and designed processes to realise future states of the universe being observed. This model is intended to promote a more holistic approach to knowledge and its management in values driven organizations but can be applied in any organization or community of practice.

 

Keywords: knowledge, organizational knowledge, knowledge management frameworks, nonprofit organizations, third sector organizations, case study, action research

 

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Journal Article

Knowledge Creation and Sharing in a Project Team: An Organizational Analysis Based on the Concept of Organizational Relation  pp97-106

Piero Migliarese, Saverino Verteramo

© Oct 2005 Volume 3 Issue 2, Editor: Charles Despres, pp65 - 138

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Abstract

In today's competitive arena, knowledge and intellectual assets management seems to be the best answer when looking to gain a competitive edge. Furthermore, traditional approaches to knowledge management based on a "single company perspective" are becoming limited; more frequently the problem is to manage "inter‑organizational "collaborations, projects and temporary structures. It is thus necessary to rethink some organizational topics (organizational structures design, personnel involvement and motivation mechanisms etc.) and to review them by introducing suitable and effective modifications with respect to specific knowledge processes. This paper takes the "Organizational Relational Approach" into consideration and applies a method for describing and interpreting the interactions among organizational actors‑ also belonging to different organizations‑ defined as Organizational Relations (OR): the method analyses these relations according to several distinct dimensions: the goals of the OR and the level of sharing for the organizational actors; the organizational rules regulating the behaviour of actors within the OR; the technological and organizational tools supporting the OR; the cultural background associated to the OR. Only when all four dimensions are highly developed is it possible to qualify the existing organizational relations as "rich "or, in this context, as "knowledge intensive" relations. The paper applies the Organizational Relations method of analysis to a successful case study of knowledge transfer from the aerospace field to the health care field. We examined the joint research project carried out by the ASI,‑Italian Space Agency‑ Ferrari DTM and two Italian Orthopaedics Departments. This project has led to the industrial production of an innovative external bone‑setting device. This analysis explains the key factors for success and the effectiveness of the managerial decisions that were adopted. Empirical findings derived from the case study analysis on one hand and results obtained from the application of the Organizational Relational Method on the other have been found to be convergent and this constitutes a good validation of the method used.

 

Keywords: Organizational Relation, Knowledge creation and sharing, Inter-organizational project team management, case study

 

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Journal Article

Knowledge‑Based Strategies for Knowledge Intensive Business Services: a Multiple Case‑study of Computer Service Companies  pp151-160

Enrico Scarso, Ettore Bolisani

© Jan 2010 Volume 8 Issue 1, Editor: Ettore Bolisani, Enrico Scarso, pp1 - 180

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Abstract

While knowledge is increasingly considered to be a key resource for companies, the models for formulating business strategies that explicitly include it as a core component are still lacking. The paper investigates such issues by considering the particular case of computer service companies, which can be seen as Knowledge Intensive Business Services (KIBS) firms connecting the sources of innovation (i.e. large multinationals, research laboratories, universities, etc.) to the individual needs of the local customers. In doing so they operate as mediators between the local cognitive requirements and the more generic knowledge available in the global environment. Since those companies base their competitiveness on the capability to manage knowledge flows among various actors, the formulation of their business strategies requires new approaches that directly focus on knowledge assets and relevant processes. The paper describes the results of a survey involving twenty‑one computer service companies located in the Northeast of Italy. The study allows the user to draw useful schemes for the identification of knowledge‑based strategies, which can be of use beyond the specific context of investigation. In particular, rather than proposing completely new models for knowledge‑based strategic formulations, the paper analyses the way knowledge can be integrated into more traditional strategic frameworks. The assumption is that these approaches can be more comfortable and understandable by the management of companies whose business is strongly based on knowledge but don't have deliberate knowledge management strategies.

 

Keywords: knowledge-based strategy business strategy KIBS computer services case study

 

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Journal Article

Trust‑Building Mechanisms for the Provision of Knowledge‑Intensive Business Services  pp46-56

Enrico Scarso, Ettore Bolisani

© Mar 2011 Volume 9 Issue 1, ECKM Special Issue, Editor: Eduardo Tome, pp1 - 84

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Abstract

The term knowledge‑intensive business services (KIBS) indicates private companies whose job consists of collecting, generating, analysing, and distributing knowledge with the purpose of delivering customized services to satisfy client’s needs. KIBS firms rely on highly educated professionals, and supply knowledge resources or other knowledge‑based services that clients are unable or unwilling to develop by themselves. The provision of KIBS entails a bilateral exchange of knowledge between the service provider and the end user along with the entire supply cycle. In this process, not only KIBS firms supply clients with precious elements of technical and applicative knowledge, but also client firms provide KIBS with pieces of knowledge that are necessary for designing a successful solution. As is well underlined in the literature, trust is an essential ingredient of client‑provider knowledge exchanges, so that KIBS companies have deal with it properly. This is not simple, since trust has several dimensions that rely on different trust‑building mechanisms. In light of this, the paper aims to analyse the different forms of trust and the related trust‑building mechanisms that come into play during the delivery of a knowledge‑intensive service. This is done by discussing the findings of a multiple case‑study of a particular group of KIBS, i.e. computer service companies located in the Northeast of Italy. Specifically, the study: a) offers a knowledge‑oriented description of the interactions that take place during the service delivery process between client and KIBS firms; b) analyses the role played by the different forms of trust, as antecedents and consequences of each interaction; c) makes some remarks about the trust building mechanisms that a KIBS company can exploit, and the resulting management implications.

 

Keywords: KIBS, knowledge interactions, trust-building mechanisms, computer services, case study

 

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