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

Designing for Innovation or Adaptation: The Symmetry, Syntopy and Synchrony of Boundary Spanning Partnerships  pp149-156

Sean Gadman

© Nov 2003 Volume 1 Issue 2, Editor: Fergal McGrath, pp1 - 226

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Abstract

The Internet is enabling a new economy based on the networking of human knowledge. While the benefits of using I.T. to connect people to people and people to information within a business are commonly understood, much less is known about the advantages of well‑managed partnerships across corporate boundaries. Building on the findings of a recent study of knowledge creating collaborations (Gadman and Cooper 2003), and the growing interest in Open Source Software development communities, (Von Hipple and Von Krogh 2003), (Cole and Lee 2003), this paper addresses the importance of selecting the most appropriate collaborative strategy to meet business needs and the challenges of managing relationships which often span organizational cultures and boundaries. The findings are relevant to any company that depends on the free flow of ideas among smart people and provides a lens through which we can learn and discover new and creative possibilities for the future.

 

Keywords: Knowledge Management Open Source Communities Communities of Common Interest, Communities of Practice, Collaboration Organisational Behaviour Organisational Design

 

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Journal Article

Sharing Contextual Knowledge in Today's Workplace Environments  pp1-12

Farhad Daneshgar, Chandra S. Amaravadi

© Jan 2005 Volume 2 Issue 1, Editor: Charles Despres, pp1 - 90

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Abstract

Due to an evolution of business models compatible with networked economy, office — environments of this age need effective support for collaboration among office workers. This article demonstrates that existing Extended Office Systems (EOS) are not specifically designed to maintain awareness and knowledge‑sharing requirements of the collaborating actors of many of today's networked office environments. Using an awareness framework for sharing of contextual knowledge in collaborative business processes, this article provides general design directives for a Collaboration‑ Aware EOS (CAEOS) system that facilitates sharing of the contextual knowledge among office workers in networked offices. In order to assess its effectiveness, this framework is applied to a network management case study with the aim of identifying the awareness requirements of the actors within that process. The results confirm effectiveness of the framework. The components of the framework, that is the process model and the awareness model, are then used as analytical tools as input to the design of CAEOS for achieving its collaborating goals. It is suggested that the process model component of the framework to constitute foundation for the knowledge‑base component of the CAEOS, whereas the awareness model of the framework to constitute foundation for the inference engine of the CAEOS'.

 

Keywords: awareness, extended office systems, EOS, collaboration support systems, knowledge sharing, knowledge representation, groupware, business intelligence

 

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Journal Article

Exploration of Knowledge Sharing Challenges in Value Networks: a Case Study in the Finnish Grocery Industry  pp505-514

Hanna Timonen, Jari Ylitalo

© Jan 2008 Volume 5 Issue 4, Editor: Charles Despres, pp347 - 550

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Abstract

Business activities are increasingly organized through networks. This article considers the value network of the Finnish grocery industry, a network where the web of relationships between two or more companies creates tangible and intangible value through the complex and dynamic exchanges. In value networks the relationships between the participants of the network tend to be more complex than the traditional make‑buy‑relationships, as companies create value together through different types of relationships such as deep buyer‑supplier‑relationships or strategic partnerships. This variance in the nature and level of collaborative relationships poses new challenges to knowledge sharing. Complementing previous research on the challenges to knowledge sharing in other network settings, this article explores the knowledge sharing challenges specific to value networks based on a qualitative case study about the value network of the Finnish grocery industry. The data consists of 32 thematic interviews of top and upper management representatives from 16 companies in the value network. The results show that the current collaborative relationships in the Finnish grocery industry are functional and working, but mostly just traditional "arms‑length" buyer‑supplier‑relationships. However, the challenges to knowledge sharing seem to be somewhat different to those present in other network settings. The challenges to knowledge sharing in value networks do not seem to concern so much the opportunities for knowledge sharing, but the motivational and cultural factors affecting what knowledge is shared and how much knowledge is shared. Based on these results, the knowledge sharing challenges of the value network can be crystallized under three points. First, the focus of knowledge sharing has been on information, and the organizational arrangements do not encourage the sharing of valuable know‑how. Second, the organizational cultures and top management directives do not encourage external knowledge sharing, and therefore knowledge is not shared. And third, the experiences of past abuses of trust and the retail groups renewed focus on price bargaining undermine the trust between the companies, thus inhibiting knowledge sharing.

 

Keywords: knowledge sharing, knowledge sharing challenges, value networks, collaboration, case studies

 

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Journal Article

On Measuring Organizational Relationships: Threats to Validity in the Use of Key‑Informants  pp71-82

Haris Papoutsakis

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

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Abstract

The measurement of organizational characteristics in empirical studies that focus on inter‑group, knowledge‑ based collaboration requires research methods different from those used for measuring the characteristics of individuals. As an answer to that, key‑informant methodology is a frequently adopted approach that has been associated with qualitative methods. However, recently organizational researchers have used the technique to obtain quantifiable information on organizational structure, internal power distribution, within the group, and external relationships among groups that base their collaboration on the knowledge they share. This paper focuses on the threats to validity, which are inherent in empirical studies that adopt the key‑informant methodology as a social science tool. In particular, the paper thoroughly examines the effects that the Bagozzi and the Cook and Campbell construct validity criteria as well as the Huber and Power key‑informant validity criteria have during the two important phases of a research, i.e. developing valid measures of the theoretical constructs, and testing the relationships between theoretical constructs. The empirical results used in this paper stem from an investigation that aimed to evaluate the contribution of Shared Knowledge and Information Technology to Manufacturing Performance. Mutual Trust and Mutual Influence, among the collaborating groups (in this case manufacturing, quality and R&D), which were used in our study, as the two antecedents of shared knowledge. For the purpose of this research, an evaluation model was developed and survey data was collected from 51 medium to large size industrial companies with a total of 112 manufacturing groups, representing five industrial sectors (alimentation, automotive, chemical and pharmaceutical, electro‑mechanical, and textile), were analyzed to test the model. The key‑informant methodology that has been used for the selection of research responders was tested against threats to validity. As a conclusion, the paper exhibits the implications of the above widely accepted construct validity criteria and specific key‑informant validity criteria, building upon the results of the above industrial empirical research. The lessons learned are presented in a way that may lead future organizational researchers to error preventive measures.

 

Keywords: inter-group collaboration, key-informant methodology, threats to validity, lessons learned

 

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Journal Article

Results of Knowledge Audit in a Scientific Collaboratory: Possible Applications of Selected KM Aspects in Scientific Collaboratories  pp49-61

Marcela Katuscakova, Martin Katuscak

© Jan 2013 Volume 11 Issue 1, ECKM 2012, Editor: Dr Juan Gabriel Cegarra and Dr María Eugenia Sánchez, pp1 - 115

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Abstract

The paper discusses possible applications of selected aspects of knowledge management in the field of collaboration in science and research, which is characterised by a high degree of knowledge specialisation. Specialised knowledge becomes productive only

 

Keywords: scientific collaboration, collaboratory, knowledge audit, knowledge management, scientific collaboration recommendation

 

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Journal Article

Driving Knowledge Sharing Initiatives in Sultan Qaboos University (SQU) Libraries for Enhanced Collaboration  pp31-44

Saud AlRashdi, Shyamala Srinivas

© Mar 2016 Volume 14 Issue 1, ECKM 2015, Editor: Andrea Garlatti and Maurizio Massaro, pp1 - 88

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Abstract

Abstract: Today⠒s work environment comprises of different parts of visible (explicit) and non‑visible (tacit) knowledge that are frequently exchanged between people and systems. Knowledge sharing is the process of exchange of knowledge between peopl e, communities and organisation. Most organisations characterize and focus their approach in knowledge management around their own specific business objectives. Knowledge management pexlays an important role in universities, especially in academic librari es because libraries are considered as knowledge repositories and are one of the oldest areas using knowledge sharing concept. The purpose of the research initially was to assess knowledge sharing in the seven libraries within Sultan Qaboos University (S QU), in terms of common standards, guidelines and policies for patrons. The research employed both theoretical and empirical analysis and was based on a review of best practices from previous studies and from data gathered from library staff and manageme nt. The first part of the study investigated the motivation to share, use of technology tools in collaboration and the strength of knowledge sharing culture among the staff. And the follow‑up study focused on the measures initiated to implement a collabor ative environment in the libraries.. The research used tools such as interviews, surveys and focus group discussions to extract the information required for analysis. Through the use of these tools the main challenges and issues facing SQU libraries with respect to collaboration was examined. The results of the assessment study were shared with the library administrative head and as a first step a training program for knowledge sharing and standardizing the management process of the different libraries to ok shape. The following investigation addresses the main learning and developments that took place after the assessment and focuses on the measures taken up to initiate formal knowledge sharing. Direct and indirect benefits will be explored and analyzed. In addition, the implication of applying knowledge

 

Keywords: Keywords: Knowledge sharing, SQU libraries, collaboration, standardisation, culture

 

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Journal Article

Crowdsourcing User‑Contributed Solutions to Aerospace Product Development Issues through Micro‑Blogging  pp126-136

Richard David Evans, James Xiaoyu Gao, Sara Mahdikhah, Mourad Messaadia, David Baudry

© Jun 2016 Volume 14 Issue 2, Editor: Ken Grant, pp89 - 158

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Abstract

Abstract: Revenue and production output of the United Kingdoms Aerospace Industry (AI) is growing year on year and the need to develop new products and innovative enhancements to existing ranges is creating a critical need for the increased utilisation and sharing of employee knowledge. The capture of employee knowledge within the UKs AI is vital if it is to retain its pre‑eminent position in the global marketplace. Crowdsourcing, as a collaborative problem solving activity, allows employees to captur e explicit knowledge from colleagues and teams and also offers the potential to extract previously unknown tacit knowledge in a less formal virtual environment. By using micro‑blogging as a mechanism, a conceptual framework is proposed to illustrate how c ompanies operating in the AI may improve the capture of employee knowledge to address production‑related problems through the use of crowdsourcing. Subsequently, the framework has been set against the background of the product development process proposed by Maylor in 1996 and illustrates how micro‑blogging may be used to crowdsource ideas and solutions during product development. Initial validation of the proposed framework is reported, using a focus group of 10 key actors from the collaborating organisa tion, identifying the perceived advantages, disadvantages and concerns of the framework; results indicate that the activity of micro‑blogging for crowdsourcing knowledge relating to product development issues would be most beneficial during product concep tualisation due to the requirement for successful innovation.

 

Keywords: Keywords: Aerospace Manufacturing, Crowdsourcing Knowledge, Employee Collaboration, Knowledge Management, Micro-Blogging

 

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Journal Article

Balancing the Flows: Managing the Intellectual Capital Flows in Inter‑Organisational Projects  pp207-216

Maria Solitander

© Apr 2006 Volume 4 Issue 2, ICICKM 2005, Editor: Charles Despres, pp91 - 216

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Abstract

The aim of this paper is to analyze different strategies for protecting knowledge in interorganisational collaborative relationships, based on intellectual capital (IC) theory. Previous research has stressed the need for the flows between structural, human and relational capital to work properly, i.e. that the firm has a broad bandwidth of communication. Firms involved in interorganisational collaborative relationships need to be able to manage the IC flows in order to make the communication run smoothly, while limiting involuntary leakage of strategically important knowledge. The paper examines the strategies aimed at keeping the balance between sharing and protecting knowledge identified in a multinational firm with extensive experience of close collaboration with partners that are partly also competitors.

 

Keywords: Intellectual capital, protection of knowledge, interorganisational collaboration

 

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