Monitoring progress in managing knowledge: an emerging agenda.

Kelleher, Michael and Woodman, Mark (2009) Monitoring progress in managing knowledge: an emerging agenda. In: 10th European Conference on Knowledge Management (ECKM 2009), 3-4 September 2009, Vicenza, Italy.

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Abstract

Knowledge management (KM) is a diverse and complex discipline. It is both about people and technology, and its implementation in modern organisations is rarely just about just one these. Even the meaning of KM is contextual, depending on the unique situation of an organisation. Consequently many standard activities are not attended to as normal management practices. We believe that evaluation and monitoring of KM are largely neglected activities. The authors’ research and practitioner perspectives on knowledge management have combined here to explore an often-neglected aspect of knowledge management – monitoring, or evaluating, its impact. We aim to develop a research agenda and so engage others in this field of enquiry. The paper draws on literature studies as well as consultancy experiences over several years. The work that does exist has often been ad hoc, although we have found three types of approach in the literature study we have conducted thus far. Here we focus initially on three fields as the basis of a systematic approach to evaluating and monitoring the impact of knowledge management: knowledge management maturity models, strategic alignment and asset management. One KM maturity model is discussed here, although others exist in the literature. KM maturity models appear to be decoupled from strategic organisational goals and progress is bounded by a knowledge management ‘journey’. Impact is implied and not explicit although perhaps this approach is consistent with the notion of ‘monitoring’. Evaluation, however, suggests a conceptually different approach and one that is rooted in terms of impact assessment. In this sense, knowledge management needs to be seen to contribute to organisational key performance indicators. One such model is explored here although more research is required as to the extent of its use and its contribution to strategy. Capitalising knowledge focuses on assessing the value of an organisation over an above its financial value as reported in traditional accounting terms. Three different models are discussed here, although several others can be found in the literature. Although the research underpinning this paper is still in its infancy it is clear that research opportunities can be identified even at this early stage. Issues are raised here to provoke debate: no definitive conclusion can be offered as this research is ongoing.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Research Areas:School of Science and Technology > Computer and Communications Engineering
Citations on ISI Web of Science:0
ID Code:5988
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Deposited On:14 Jun 2010 08:23
Last Modified:06 Feb 2013 11:40

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