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Kam 6 kevin mark abela a00255269

  1. 1. Knowledge Area Module 6Fundamentals of Knowledge ManagementbyKevin M. Abela kevin.abela@waldenu.eduStudent ID # A00255269Program: PhD in Applied ManagementSpecialization: Self-DesignedKAM Assessor: Louis L. Taylor Louis.taylor@waldenu.eduFaculty Mentor: Louis L. Taylor Louis.taylor@waldenu.eduWalden UniversityMay 4, 20131
  2. 2. AbstractBreadthThe Breadth component identified and presents a critical analysis of the foundations ofKnowledge Management Theory as viewed through the theoretical lenses of Keynes,Polanyi, and Simon. The author develops a synthesis of six key areas and nineperspectives and develops a direct relationship between the seminal theorists’contributions that answer the question of: What is Knowledge Management Theory?What role does KM theory play in an organization? How can an organization put KMtheory to work in its short and long term objectives? This study will effect social changeby clearifying the theoretical view of an impotant area of education and mangment inorder to effect a controlled direction for future development of the discipline.2
  3. 3. AbstractDepthThe analysis of the Breadth component related the current research within the Depth componentthat presents the areas of knowledge management of interest and speculation to national,industrial, and academic contributions to the field. The Depth component answers the question ofwhat is knowledge management and how can it be implemented in organizations. This review ispresented in the view of knowledge management theory developed in the Breadth from theseminal works of Keynes, Polanyi, and Simon. A new knowledge management body ofknowledge (KMBOK) has been assembled from the analysis of the Breadth and from theAnnotated Bibliography and presented in the structure of Deming’s total quality management(TQM) model that compares current frameworks to the concepts presented in the Breadth. Thisencyclopedic format is presented in a conversational style that offers a unique dialog on themulti-faceted discipline of knowledge management. This area effects social change by creatingnew knowledge that will improve the effectiveness of knowledge creation, diffusion, andabsorption for workers and mangers alike.3
  4. 4. AbstractApplicationThe application is designed to disseminate the knowledge compiled in the Breadth and theDepth. The vehicle chosen is to present the findings in a minimum ten page paper to a peerreviewed journal, trade journal, and/or professional website. Secondary but of equal importanceis to present the findings by way of presenting the study to interested parties through apresentation at a professional seminar and/or placed in the professional website as a power pointpresentation. As you may know this may take a substantial amount of time for the journal(s)review the article, once this has been done the application will be updated. This will add to thebody of knowledge and increase social change through academics, practitioners, and knowledgeworkers a concrete foundation for the discipline of KM and to create and disseminateknowledge.4
  5. 5. Table of ContentsList of Tables.......................................................................................................................6Breadth.................................................................................................................................7Depth 30Annotated Bibliography...............................................................................................30Annotated Bibliography.....................................................................................................30Literature Review Essay..............................................................................................51Literature Review Essay....................................................................................................51Application.........................................................................................................................76Discussion....................................................................................................................77Discussion..........................................................................................................................775
  6. 6. List of TablesTable 1. Knowledge Management Area Mapping ...............................................766
  7. 7. BreadthAMDS 8610: Theories of Knowledge Management (KM)BreadthAMDS 8601: Theories of Knowledge Management (KM)The breadth section develops the roots of contemporary knowledge management theorythat guides the student in understanding the progression of knowledge management (KM) fromthe seminal works of Keynes, Polanyi, and Simon into what is now seen as the discipline ofknowledge management. In the following pages the philosophies of the seminal theorists will bealigned with the principles of KM theory. A critical analysis and synthesis will be conducted tocreate the foundation that contemporary KM is based upon developing the connection betweenthe Depth and Application sections of this document.An analysis of how each theorist’s work is applied to KM theory will be developed anddiscussed within each section. The relationship between the core tenements of KM theory will beoutlined and how they developed into key areas of modern management studies and applications.A critical analysis of each tenement with relational perspectives of modern KM will also beconducted to show the development of KM from the seminal theorists’ views and perspective.This framework will also be applied to the literature review analysis followed by the conclusion.This study is guided by organizational theory (March & Simon) and a methodology using aframework of total quality management (TQM) developed by Deming. There are six main areasof KM theory they are; organizational behavior, organizational structure, organizational culture,7
  8. 8. innovation, competitive advantage, and training and development. There are nine perspectives;tacit knowledge, motivation, problem solving, organizational process, organizational objectives,leadership, knowledge creation, diffusion, intellectual property. For each of these perspectivesthere are tools and techniques that can be applied to each and can be configured creatively forinputs and outputs to archive a range of results. To some this framework is reminiscing of theProject Management Institutes’ (PMI) Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK)Guide (PMI, 2008) this is no coincidence as knowledge management and project management(that does not quite have a theory as of yet, PMI, 2008) as well as KM (Timbrell, Delaney, Chan,Yue & Gable, 2005) share a formative history with the seminal theorist Keynes, Polanyi, andSimon.There is no question that KM means many things to many different organizations,individuals, and academic/professional disciplines especially when taken in context of eachsystem. This is shown by the huge amount of literature compiled since the acknowledgement ofKM at the start of the nineties. Likewise, it seems to be a consensus in the literature that KM isstill in an embryonic stage of development and that it lacks direction (Newman & Conrad, 1999).This study is yet another literature review of the material. However, this study attempts to defineKM from its earliest roots to its current development. This study is an in-depth analysis of theseminal works selected by the author from a citation analysis obtained using keyword search ofarticles relating to “Knowledge Management” Knowledge Management Theory” and“Knowledge Management and Project Management”. Databases from several digital librarieswere searched and filters for “peer reviewed” and dates within the past ten years were applied8
  9. 9. It is no coincidence that knowledge management (KM) has its roots in economics. Theinfluence of economics is found in practically all areas of business management and its impacton process development and organizational practices are far reaching. To highlight thisrelationship this breadth discussion will begin with a brief biography of each of the three seminaltheorist of KM to develop this chain of reasoning. This section will be followed by six sectionshighlighting the nine central themes of KM that led to the development of KM theory will beexplored.Knowledge Management Theory DefinedDefining KM is not as easy as it may appear and is one of the goals of this breadthapplication is to develop a sound definition of KM that has deep roots in theory. For example;according tohttp://www.unc.edu/~sunnyliu/inls258/Introduction_to_Knowledge_Management.html a“simple” definition of KM is“Knowledge Management (KM) refers to a multi-disciplined approach to achievingorganizational objectives by making the best use of knowledge. KM focuses on processsuch as acquiring, creating and sharing knowledge and the cultural and technicalfoundation that support them.”This definition while simple does have all the elements that are proposed in this study as thebasic structure of KM theory and that this framework is likewise supported in the context of theearly works of Keynes, Polanyi, and Simon.9
  10. 10. In support of the areas of acquiring, creating, and sharing knowledge Polanyi does nothesitate to make his declarations that were to him undeniable. Also during this era knowledgeand innovation were commonly seen as fundamental to business and product development thatwent hand and hand with organizational learning. These beliefs were based upon the then currentparadigms of scientific management theory developed by Taylor (Polanyi, 2009). Likewise,Keynes (1953) describes the value of these three areas by the statement “That is to say, effectivedemand, instead of having a unique equilibrium value, is an infinite range of values all equallyadmissible” (p. 19) and that it is in the organization that knowledge is generated and madeavailable in the work force. However, Keynes notes that this arises from the “intermittentdemand for highly specialised resources” (p. 19). Simon also contributes in this area as “trainingthrough experience and planned job rotation that the organization itself can provide” (Simon,1960, p. 12).Processes are address by Keynes statement“a given firm has to bring in labour which is less and less efficient for its special purposesper wage-unit paid to it, this is merely one factor among others leading to a diminishingreturn from the capital equipment in terms of output as more labour is employed on it.”(Keynes, 1953, p. 33)From This statement we can see that Keynes begins the first relationship with employeeknowledge in his General Theory of Employment and Knowledge Management can be seen as“technique” or in today’s terminology “process”10
  11. 11. Organizational objectives are related by the seminal theorist as part of businessmanagement. According to Simon, 1960; “A broad policy decision creates a new condition forthe organization’s executives” (p. 3). Simon infers that organizational objectives are problems tobe solved thus requiring a determination of the response based upon learning how to makedecisions or the acquisition of knowledge to answer the questions posed. Keynes, 1953 alsoshows an early relationship towards organizational objectives through the statement “when thechange in long-term expectations is for the better, employment may be at a higher level at first,than it will be after there has been time to adjust the equipment to the new situation.” (p. 38).This definition is recommended as a definition, it’s simple form does not focus uponspecific aspects of KM. But has verifiable roots back to the seminal theorist and not quitesupporting the many specific areas in which KM can be applied to i.e. intellectual capital,knowledge management systems, tangible and intangible assets, tacit and explicit knowledge anddiffusion. All these areas will be address in the following sectionsBiographiesKeynes11
  12. 12. John Maynard Keynes (1883-1946) was an English mathematician and economist, who iswidely known as the founder of the Keynesian School of Economics also called MacroEconomics. Keynes was the protégé of Alfred Marshall who guided Keynes towards a career ineconomics (http://www.biographyonline.net/writers/keynes.html). Keynes wrote many worksincluding A treatise on Probability, Indian Currency and Finance, The Economic Consequencesof the Peace and Tract on Monetary Reform (Friedman, 1997). Keynes was a prolific writer andwrote in many mediums including articles, reviews and biographical essays he also was involvedwith several trade publications of note the Economic Journal. Keynes also was known as an“influential outsider” in his connections with the English government he helped to develop theplans for the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank for Reconstruction andDevelopment (Friedman, 1997).Keynes most influential work is most arguable his last and that is the General Theory ofEmployment, Interest and Money written in nineteen thirty six. Keynes devoted much of his lateryears to social engineering however; the perspective employed by Keynes was aristocraticleading to a meritocracy in some small way. Keynes like others before him and those after himsought to discover how to manipulate power effectively and to educate those who managegovernmental agencies (Friedman, 1997). Keynes also was influential with a broader group ofindividuals likely due to his role in the world of business and role as a consultant. It can besurmised that his appeal was the framework of developing a plan for problem solving thatresounded with his audience.12
  13. 13. PolanyiMichael Polanyi (1891-1976) was a Hungarian-British chemist, philosopher, andeconomist who is the author of numerous books and papers that include Science, Faith andSociety, Personal Knowledge: Towards a Post-Critical Philosophy, and The Tacit Dimension(Polanyi, 2009). Polanyi was born in Budapest and earned a medical degree in nineteen thirteenand a PhD. in chemistry in nineteen seventeen (Nye, 2002). Most of Polanyi’s early career wasfocused upon chemistry that spanned from nineteen ten to nineteen thirty. Polanyi worked at theKaiser Wilhelm Institute for Fiber Chemistry and during the thirties left Germany in the wake ofthe emerging Nazi regimes’ policies regarding people of Jewish decent. At this time Polanyi wasgaining great renown for his work in chemistry and joint corroborations with Wigner and Pelzerthat came to be considered as the foundations of the modern discipline of chemical dynamics(Nye, 2002).By the late nineteen thirties Polanyi made a shift towards philosophy and economicsspurred by a sibling rivalry with his brother Karl Polanyi, the renowned economist. Likewise,Polanyi had deep concerns and criticism for the economic and political policies of the SovietUnion. Polanyi foregone chemistry for social science in nineteen forty eight and in nineteen fiftynine retired to Merton College at Oxford (Nye, 2002). During these years Polanyi wrote severalbooks on politics, social issues, and economics that included Contempt of Freedom, PatentReform, and Full Employment and Free Trade (Sen, 2009). It is now nineteen sixty two andPolanyi is starting his third transformation with the Terry Lectures that cumulate into his second13
  14. 14. seminal work in nineteen sixty six The Tacit Dimension and foundation for the emergingknowledge management theory of the nineteen eighties (Polanyi, 2009).SimonHerbert Alexander Simon (1916-2001) was born in America was an eminent economist,political and social scientist (Pugh, 2007). Dr. Simon was educated at the university of Chicago,Illinois whose distinguished career including being a faculty member at the University ofCalifornia in Berkley, CA, the Illinois Institute of Technology and starting in nineteen forty nine,the Carnegie Institute of Technology where he served as the Associate Dean of the GraduateSchool of Industrial Administration and as a teaching professor (Simon, 1960). In nineteen sixty,Dr. Simon was the Ford Distinguished Visiting Professor at the School of Commerce, Accounts,and Finance at New York University, New York where he conducted The Ford DistinguishedLectures that cumulated into his seminal work The New Science of Management Decision.Dr. Simon has written well over two hundred books and research papers as a co-author orauthor that include the areas of organizational theory and the behavioral sciences his mostnotable works include Administrative Behavior, Public Administration, and Organizations withJames G. March a former collogue at Carnegie-Mellon University, that also contributed to thedevelopment of the concept of Bounded Rationality (Pugh, 2007). Dr. Simon was a consultant tobusiness leaders and governments and was a director for the Nuclear Science and EngineeringCorporation (NSEC) and the Social Science Research Council (SSRC) as well as a member ofthe fraternal associations of Phi Beta Kappa and Sigma Xi (Simon, 1960). In nineteen seventy14
  15. 15. eight Dr. Simon received the Nobel Prize for Economics for his unprecedented intellectualcontributions to the social sciences (Pugh, 2007).Key Concepts of Knowledge Management TheoryOrganizational BehaviorIt becomes apparent from the works of Keynes, Polanyi, and Simon that the “knowledgebased organization’ is one that manages its workforce to improve its operations and process tochanging situations that impact the organization. It is not too far off to say that the knowledgedeemed of value to an organization was likewise shaped through an organizational thoughtprocesses that follows Polanyi’s “scientific valuation process” (Polanyi, 2009, p. 67). Likewise,the organization itself is seen as the repository of knowledge and a mechanism to develop anddisseminate its unique product.According to Newman & Conrad, 1999 there are “organizational agents…exist insituations in which knowledge retention and transfer cannot be fully attributed to individual orspecific automated agents” (p. 7). Likewise Simon affirms this connection “The collectivememories of organization members are vast encyclopedias of factual knowledge, habitual skills,and operating procedures…formal training and experience, with the repertoire of skills and otherhabits they need in their jobs” (Simon, 1960, p. 9-10).The aspect that knowledge management theory guides organizational behavior ismotivated by knowledge generation within a “knowledge based organization” is a dynamic and15
  16. 16. evolving system “when originality breeds new values, it breeds them tacitly, by implication; wecannot choose explicitly a set of new values, but must submit to them by the very act of creatingor adopting them” (Polanyi, 2009, p. xix). In this Polanyi relates to change managementspecifically cultural change as a natural function of knowledge creation that can also can beapplied to the concept of “knowledge absorption” both programed and non-programed as relatedby Simon.As organizations are unique entities so will be their organizational objectives. It iscommon knowledge that organizations strive to align their structure with their objectives.Potentially the six components of KM are fundamental to this objective as we noted earlier theorganizational structure, its plans for innovation, its practices of training and developing its workforces and its place in the market specifically it’s competitive advantage. KM to all the seminaltheorists was an organizational objective developing it into a core process seemed second natureand presented itself as evolutionary. However, as fast as the times were moving from thenineteen thirties to the nineteen sixties there was still a consensus of the career path and climbingthe corporate ladder. KM is well situated for the development of executive leadership as anorganizational objective and indicative of a behavioral mechanism. KM is behavior, one that isfocused upon a core process.Initially KM focuses upon the individuals’ behavior, one that displays a competency forgaining greater knowledge (Ajzen, 1991). Leadership is critical to KM theory as well as theadoption of an organizational leadership style most notable the “Reverent” leadership style that16
  17. 17. is based upon knowledge and the command of knowledge. This leadership style is not in popularuse and likewise, other attributes of this leadership style such as creativity are not widelyemplaced in the executive leadership. KM is has been seen in its widest use in organizations inthe area of “grooming” and this area is not really denoted as a KM practice, However, bothSimon and Polanyi both note that in order to solve problems on must be put on a rotation ofduties within the organization and developing experience through mentorships,interorganizattional training with a tapping into the knowledge stored within the organization ishighly reminiscent of “grooming” for positions of executive management.The basic organizational processes are according to Simon the generators oforganizational knowledge. With process improvements new knowledge is gained the way anorganization responds and encourages employees to develop and create process improvements isdirectly related to organizational behavior. Included in this is motivation, process improvementcan be inclusive of employees or done solely by upper management hence, a defining of thebehaviorism inherent within the organization and a key indicator to the level of knowledgegeneration/creation developed within the organization as a whole or held exclusively for uppermanagement which seems to have been the status quo for much of the twentieth century and stillhighly apparent in the twenty first.Organizational StructureThe connection with organizational structure and KM theory is most prominent inSimons work. Simon also made a great contribution to Organization Theory with his works with17
  18. 18. his colleague March in their classical and ground breaking work Organizations, it is no surprisethat organizational structure would be associated with KM. Simon seen that as automationstarted to take hold in the organizations of the nineteen sixties that organizational structure wouldlikewise be geared towards this development. This is related by Simon that “An organization willtend to assume hierarchical form whenever the task environment is complex relative to theproblem-solving and communicating powers of the organization members and their tools.“Hierarchy is the adaptive form for finite intelligence to assume in the face of complexity”(Simon, 1960, p. 43).However, Simon also sees that part of this process calls for a form of decentralization“The decision-making process will still call for departmentalization and sub-departmentalizationof responsibilities. There is some support for this prediction in the last decade’s experience withcomputer programming” (Simon, 1960, p. 42). Simon understood that this was an evolvingsystem that like organizational behavior was dynamic in the organization and would not bestagnate but progressive “It may by bringing about a more explicit formal description of theentire system make the relations among the parts clear and more explicit” (Simon, 1960, p. 40).This view of KM theory as applied to Simons’ model of organizational structure is supported bySimons’ statement that “Among possible systems of a given size and complexity, hierarchicalsystems, composed of subsystems, are the most likely to appear through evolutionary processes”(Simon, 1960, p. 41).18
  19. 19. Likewise Polanyi tells us that KM theory needs to have this dynamic structure and thatthere is “the inescapable need for a traditional framework [to]…serve as a paradigm for otherintellectual and moral progress in a free dynamic society” (Polanyi, 2009, p. 63). Polanyi alsoaddress decision making and there is a correlation with Simon’s decision making and problemsolving perspective on executive management and leadership that is developed through theorganization structure. Keynes also address change within the organizational structure throughthe area of organizational planning and objectives“In the case of short-term expectations this is because changes in expectation are not, asa rule, sufficiently violent or rapid, when they are for the worse, to cause theabandonment of work on all the productive processes which, in the light of the revisedexpectation, it was a mistake to have begun; whilst, when they are for the better, sometime for preparation must needs elapse before employment can reach the level at which itwould have stood if the state of expectation had been revised sooner” (Keynes, 1953).Change in structure was seen as common place and necessary to the life-cycle of thebusiness as some would say “the business of business is business” so change in organizationalstructure is eminent and should not be unduly dreaded as another perspective is impacted theperspective of motivation, but should be adequately planned for through sufficient planning andtraining of the work force through knowledge management to avoid loss of labor and theinability to take advantage of opportunities while reducing risks. KM can be viewed as a meansof mitigating risk and as a means of insuring a smooth transition to restructuring and processimprovements as well as automation in current systems.Organizational Culture19
  20. 20. This is probably the most important concept in the knowledge management theory.Without a culture of knowledge, KM is not going to attain the benefits envisioned by itsforefathers. The amount of effort an organization invests in KM the more KM will give back. Allthree seminal theorists insist that employees and management participate in knowledgegeneration and acquisition. However, only Simon and Polanyi target executive management. Inhere is the concern, as the theory does not detail how to begin KM it is assumed that it is anintegral and evolving system that just seems to have been present from the beginnings of theorganization. The business environment of the late industrial revolution to the early years ofcomputer automation were highly unique and spurred many scientific, social, industrial, andmanagement discoveries, concepts and beliefs. Socio-economic, Global, and National environsshape industry is ways not quite known however, its impact is believed to be felt and manifestedwithin the culture of the organization.Simon clearly stated that decentralization would be an element of the new managementsystem and that during periods when an organization has problems to solve it would naturallygravitate to a hierarchical structure. Likewise it seems that all authors felt that this was standardoperating procedure for organizations or at least a situation that they may need to address atsome point. Likewise, Polanyi also described how to generate tacit knowledge throughexperience working in “all” areas of the organization. Thus, moving an individual around theorganization to assess areas of interest that the employee projects, and hence, the means and willto properly monitor and record the employee and develop a guidance plan for (at the minimum)20
  21. 21. those suited to further participate in the developmental program for filling greater and greaterroles of responsibly or skill within the organization.This brings up the issue of motivation, all organizations want highly motivatedemployees. Motivated employees get more work done, have less sick days, show up for workevery day and only miss work due to force majeure. Motivated employees don’t just happen theyare made through the culture and every generation has its idiosyncrasies that will affect theculture of the organization in both positive and negative ways. During this era the psychologicalcontract guided employee morale, loyalty, and employee retention these facets of organizationalculture were high and crucial to the development of KM within the culture. Longevity wasdefinitely an aspect of knowledge creation and a learning environment must be emplaced.Keynes explained that when skilled employees are unavailable the organization will need to hiremore and more unskilled employees for the same output leading to a loss of capital returns. AndSimon states that “A broad policy decision creates a new condition for the organization’sexecutives” (Simon, 1960, p. 3).Thus, there is the possibility of losing their competitive advantage, market share andprofitability. There is a relation with a culture of learning (KM) and a culture that embraceschange in order to meet the problems that face an organization the dynamic, learning, andevolving organization are those that meet these challenges without major upheavals.Organizations must according to Simon make the effort “to reflect about theorganizational and social implications of these rapid technical developments” (Simon, 1960, p.21
  22. 22. xi). Simon sees this as one of the problems that an organization must solve and detailed what isnow known as “environmental scanning” to detect these potential threats, likewise, a precursorfor risk management and responses to developing risks. Inherently all the process groups andknowledge areas of KM will be in play in the culture and constantly interact and effect thedimension of the organizations culture, there is no question that a culture of KM is truly adynamic one whose employees must reflect this dynamism of knowledge creation within theorganization.InnovationInnovation as a component of KM theory goes back to Taylor’s scientific managementand Keynes, Polanyi, and Simon all draw upon this earlier work. These “innovations” in thoughtsuch as Taylor’s are further expounded by Simon that there were “Important innovations indecision-making process in business are already resulting from these discoveries” (Simon, 1960,p. 35). Likewise Polanyi introduced the process of evolutionary innovation brought upon by his“Theory of Tacit Knowing” this however is based upon developing an environment in whichthere is a “firm support for generalizing it to the process of evolutionary innovations [and]consecutive operational levels necessitates this assumption of a principle which works in themanner of an innovation achieved by tacit integration” (Polanyi, 2009, p. 90).Polanyi does not hesitate to make his declarations known, and to him during this eraknowledge and innovation were fundamental to organizational objectives and product22
  23. 23. development, that went hand and hand with organizational learning and the then currentparadigms based upon the scientific management theory of Taylor. Innovation leads toorganizational change and touches upon the current discipline of change management. Polanyidescribes this process as “when originality breeds new values, it breeds them tacitly, byimplication; we cannot choose explicitly a set of new values, but must submit to them by thevery act of creating or adopting them.” (Polanyi, 2009, p. xix) This view is one of knowledgecreation and relates to the current thoughts on emergent knowledge.Currently there is a focus on knowledge creation and its relations with tacit knowledge.Polanyi relates that in order to develop tactic knowledge an atmosphere of creativity must bepresent. Likewise, those in the organization that are in a leadership position must have the self-efficacy (Bandura) to lead the organization towards discovery. The six basic areas of whatconstitutes KM theory are interconnected with each other and follow the basic framework ofTotal Quality Management (TQM) in its basic formant of five process groups and nineknowledge areas the areas deemed to relate most to innovation are knowledge creation,intellectual property/capital and its associated area of intangible assists.Polanyi best address the area of intangible assets with the analogy of the cobblestone“To trust that a thing we know is real is, in this sense, to feel that it has the independenceand power for manifesting itself in yet unthought of ways in the future. I shall say,accordingly,, that minds and problems possess a deeper reality than cobblestones,although cobblestone are admittedly more real in the sense of being tangible. And since Iregard the significance of a thing as more important than its tangibility, I shall say thatminds and problems are more real than cobblestones. This is to class our knowledge ofreality with the kind of foreknowledge which guides scientist to discovery” (Polanyi,2009, p. 32-33).23
  24. 24. There is one area that poses some conflict in that the seminal theorist saw that“discovery” and “innovation” were for the most part interchangeable and either was the desirablestate and both were viewed as “knowledge creation”. In here we have another area the is one ofthe perspectives of KM theory the creation of knowledge is seen as coming from Polanyi’stheory of tacit knowing and how that this type of knowledge is acquired and diffused throughoutthe organization. Comparatively Polanyi’s tacit and explicit knowledge can be likened toSimon’s programed and non-programed decision making in problem solving as related byPolanyi “Such operations resemble an integration of particulars by means of tacit knowing andresemble, above all, the seeing of solving of a problem…a new knowledge of nature” (Polanyi,2009, p. 44). It is not too far off to say that the knowledge deemed of value to an organizationwas likewise shaped through an organizational thought processes that follows Polanyi’sscientific valuation process (Polanyi, 2009, p. 67). Organizational innovation according toPolanyi is also part of the “organizational knowledge” or repository in that“The most daring innovations of science spring from a vast range of information whichthe scientist accepts unchallenged as a background to his problem…current standards will be thebasis of this reform…mediated by thousands…he accepts unchallenged…to make a sequence ofchoices…strains his imagination to the utmost…every step is an effort to meet an immediatenecessity” (Polanyi, 2009, p. 80-81).A sound organizational knowledge base, especially explicit knowledge that is thefoundation of innovation within the organization, in order to maintain innovation andknowledge creation tacit knowledge likewise, needs to be developed through learning and24
  25. 25. experience and perceived as “unchallenged” however, organizational “tacit knowledge” will notbe mediated by “thousands” but by the organization core leadership and directed by theorganizations core processes the employee development programs and the human resourcessuccession plan(s).Competitive AdvantageArguably Keynes (1953) is perhaps the first theorist to contemplate the “disutility” oflabor as a means of competitive advantage. Keynes states that “equality may be disturbed…ifcompetition and markets are imperfect… [that] Disutility must be here understood to cover everykind of reason [that are] analogous to the imperfections of competition which qualify” Disutilityalso should encompass the withholding of employment due to the work force not havingdesirable knowledge or skillsets required by the employer (Keynes, 1953, p. 13).This shows the need for organizations to properly manage knowledge, in order tomaintain competitiveness, thus avoiding disutility in the workforce. Simon also associatescompetitive advantage in the development of product divisions and that “Product divisions maybecome even more important than they are today” (Simon, 1960, p. 50). This can also be seen asSimon’s early contribution to the area of product differentiation as a means of developing acompetitive advantage.Likewise, Simon address the need to take “advantage” since “the main issue is how weshall take advantage of the greater analytic capacity, the larger ability to take into account theinterrelations of thing, that the new developments in decision making give us” (Simon, 1960, p.25
  26. 26. 45). How this is accomplished is potentially seen as knowledge management and diffusion ofknowledge throughout the organization not just leadership. Great leadership is seen as an assetand to some a competitive advantage Simon saw this as “the comparative advantage” (p. 33).Albeit, between man and machine but also through information systems.Both seminal theorist Simon, and Keynes present labor as a means of competitiveadvantage with developing knowledge with advances in production and data retrieval. Simonrelates competitive advantage with automation and decision making as determining whichprocess will be automated and which ones will remain manual for “the greatest advantage isproductivity” (p. 37-38)Product, project, portfolio, and program management are more widely being seen as ameans to competitive advantage and the knowledge to successfully execute these objectives isalso seen as a core business process these areas of enterprise need highly competent and trainedknowledge workers (human capital) and the tools to implement the plans accordingly. Developedproperly this will be an organizations intellectual capital (IC) and a further means to competitiveadvantage in proprietary knowledge systems, business models, and processes as well asinfrastructure. The theorist saw this area as “special purposes” to develop specialized units tohandle the problems faced by the organization or to further advance the organizations objectives.Simon coined the term program from the budding computer industry and related it todecision making and problem solving with his concepts of programed decision and non-programed decision, Likewise, Polanyi developed tacit knowledge and explicit knowledge all of26
  27. 27. which create a competitive advantage for the individual who can take advantage of this skill set.Simon also saw a severe problem with this in that those that developed greater problem solvingskills would take advantage of their position and abuse; it is a scenario that has not been in shortsupply. As far as KM theory can touch upon this area, empathy and ethics will play a key part ina KM program undue competition is not conducive to a healthy learning environment KM mustbe balanced and integrated thought the organization and ingrained within the culture andbehavior and reflective of the structure, as KM is in an embryonic state KM must be incubatedwithin the organization to develop it into a core process leading to competitive advantage.Training and DevelopmentAccording to Simon training and development stem from “periods of innovation [and]development of standard methods [designed] for repetitive work” (Simon, 1960, p. 11). This isthe basis on which explicit knowledge is developed and diffused within the KM theory. Simonstates that“Standard operating procedures provide a means for indoctrinating new members into thehabitual patterns of organizational behavior…bringing habitual patterns out into the openwhere they can be examined, modified and improved…upon improving the knowledge,skills, and habits of individual employees by means of training programs and plannedtours of duty” (Simon, 1960, p. 10).“This is a simple-minded approach to the problem…with two kinds of training:…training inbasic principles…training through experience and planned job rotation that the organizationitself can provide” (Simon, 1960, p. 12). Keynes also saw the need for proper employee trainingwith the statement “whilst if, as output increases, a given firm has to bring in labour which is less27
  28. 28. and less efficient for its special purposes per wage-unit paid to it, this is merely one factor amongothers leading to a diminishing return from the capital equipment in terms of output as morelabour is employed on it.” (p. 33) From This statement we can see that Keynes begins the firstrelationship with employee knowledge in his General Theory of Employment and KnowledgeManagement can be seen as “technique” or in today’s terminology “process”. Likewise, Keynescalled this “Disutility” a concept that should encompass the withholding of employment due tothe work force not having desirable knowledge or skillsets required by the employer (Keynes,1953, p. 13). Polanyi also determined that employee training was critical to knowledge creationand hence KM “But can it not be argued, once more, that the possibility of teaching theseappearances by practical exercise proves that we can tell our knowledge of them” (Polanyi, 2009,p. 5). Polanyi also stated that training and development is also based upon the employeeaccepting the authority of those instructing (Polanyi, 2009, p. 61).Simon presents three principles for developing decision making skills is another facet oftraining and development in KM theory they are; 1. Practice, 2. Learning and 3. Experience thisthen allows an individual to develop mature skills in intelligence, design, and activity choice thatthey previously did not have (Simon, 1960, p.1). Executives allocate their time to environmentalsurveying, brainstorming and selection of actions amongst objectives; Simon wanted us to thinkof information as “tangible” (p. 5). Simon also relates that a decision is not made unless it isplaced on an executive’s agenda (Simon, 1960, p. 2).Conclusion28
  29. 29. The total package of KM theory consists of the six key areas and relates to the key areasof business; management, operations, human resources, production, employees andorganizational information. All these areas are a necessity for a business to function and prosper;all take some form of knowledge diffusion. What emphasis the organization places on each ofthe core business units as guided by its objectives determines the presence of a degree of KM.Whether or not an organization adopts a philosophy of KM it is already in effect within theorganization optimizing and embracing knowledge as core process, organizations culture, orasset is probably going to be dictated by the external environment if one cannot see the dynamicsalready at work in the firm.Keynes, Polanyi, and Simon all seen the importance of human capital and the competitiveadvantage that greater knowledge gives a firm. The ability to solve the problems that confront anorganization is equated with long term success and growth. No organizations wants to be“smaller” they want to “do more with less” this takes innovation and creativity, for if you onlywant to reduce the size of an organization just bust them up and sell them off.29
  30. 30. DepthAMDS 8620: Current Research in Knowledge ManagementAnnotated BibliographyAjzen, I. (1991). The theory of planned behavior. Organizational Behavior & Human DecisionProcesses, (50)2, 179-211. http://www.cas.hse.ru/data/816/479/1225/Oct%2019%20Cited%20%231%20Manage%2 0THE%20THEORY%20OF%20PLANNED%20BEHAVIOR.pdfResearch Methodology and FindingsThis article is a review of the past works on the theory of planned behavior previouslywritten by the author. This theory focuses upon the individual who is fully functioning and reactsto the influence of biological factors and the environment on his/her behavior. The theoryfocuses on the prediction and explanation of human behavior in a behavioral context. The authorasks the question; can behavior be predicted by combining intention and perceived behavioralcontrol? Ajzen found that opportunity and resources are the individuals’ impetus for intending toperform the behavior, and if in place the individual; should behave accordingly. Ajzen relatesthat this theory is closely related to Bandura’s work on self-efficacy and its relationship withdecision making. Results show that a detailed description can be derived from the underlyingfoundation of an individual’s beliefs. This will allow for the acquisition of substantiveinformation detailing a behaviors determinants’. Inquiries have been partly successful in thefoundation of attitude toward a behavior subject norm and perceived behavioral control.30
  31. 31. Critical AssessmentThis article provides a useful framework for analyzing behavior in specific contexts. Thistheory can be used in KM and HR to determine the unique factors that induce certain employeesto engage in the behaviors associated with career paths within the organization and determine aprogram for employee motivation and career development form an employee and organizationalperspective. The study does have numerous short comings in that the form of the relation isundefined as related by the author. However, there are substantial findings that support theframework as a tool for understanding behavior or in the use of planning behavior interventionsto guide the behavioral changes deemed necessary to affect employee or organizational change.Carlson, J. P., Vincent, L. H., Hardesty, D. M., & Bearden, W. O. (2009). Objective andsubjective knowledge relationships: A quantitative analysis of consumer researchfindings. Journal of Consumer Research, 35(5), 864-876. EBSCOhost.Research Methodology and FindingsCarlson, Vincent, Hardesty & Bearden (2009) used the framework of test-theory todetermine if correlations’ exist between objective knowledge (OK) i.e. what we know andsubjective knowledge (SK) i.e. what we think we know, are positive. Carlson et al, 2009 alsosought to differentiate whether OK is stronger than SK between market areas associated withdurable and non-durable goods. The authors found that OK and SK relationships are morefocused upon products vs. non-products and public vs. private and leaned more towards a SKmeasurement for expert vs. average comparison of products as a factor. The authors used a meta-31
  32. 32. analysis of fifty five studies that returned one hundred and three samples followed the proceduresoutlined by hunter and Schmidt (2004). This study focused upon consumer and showed thatresearchers may be able to use just SK measurements to determine consumer knowledge, andthat calibration research has determined a greater need for calibration between OK and SK. Thisstudy can be used to assess knowledge for different types of knowledge areas inclusive a KMorganizational model or training program for knowledge evaluation.Critical AssessmentThe study had a huge amount of data to crunch some forty eight thousand nine hundredand thirteen observations resulting in an average sample size of four hundred and seventy fivewith a median of one hundred and nineteen. This allowed Carlson et al, to quantify the resultsthat brought to light the relationship between OK and SK in its moderating factors this finding isof significant value and sheds light on the type of situations that accessing knowledge plays onknowledge acquisition in organizations and individuals. A further understanding of OK and SKin a framework of KM Carson et al. noted the limitations of this study in the area of hedonicproducts and their low level of comprehension in the literature.Earl, M. (2001). Knowledge management strategies: Toward a taxonomy. Journal ofManagement Information Systems, 18(1), 215-233. Retrieved fromhttp://search.proquest.com/docview/218924701?accountid=14872Research Methodology and FindingsEarl presents his study from the framework of the resource based theory of the firm andasks whether the “school” approach develops a useable taxonomy that satisfies KM planning?32
  33. 33. Earl used a data analysis of primary and secondary sources to determine his findings. Earl foundthat there are KM schools of thought that were present in a substantial amount of the casesstudied. As KM can be defined in many ways and that there are significant choices in both whatto do and how to do it that can be applied to KM initiatives. This study is useful in that it can beused as a framework for executives for choosing KM projects according to goals, organizationalculture, level of technology, and behavior or economic biases.Critical AssessmentOne major problem noted with the study was that it was unable to verify that the seven“schools” of KM actually exists and only speculated on how you would make them work in theeveryday world. The study used second hand sources and this puts the studies credibility inquestion. There is a huge amount of literature on KM in recent years that covers many facets ofKM Earl used a panel of knowledge officers in a quasi-Delphi panel and for this study it appearsto have been successful. Earl notes that KM is critical to knowledge creation and its roots ineconomics that seeks to make KM a strategy towards gaining a competitive advantage throughfirm-specific knowledge that will be difficult to duplicate by rivals. However, keeping thebenefits of KM in the mainstream literature is needed to maintain interest in a core managementprocess that seems to be seriously ignored.Fetterhoff, T., Nila, P., & McNamee, R. C. (2011). Accessing internal knowledge:Organizational practices that facilitate the transfer of tacit knowledge. ResearchTechnology Management, 54(6), 50-54. Retrieved fromhttp://search.proquest.com/docview/906328382?accountid=14872Research Methodology and Findings33
  34. 34. This study by Fetterhoff, Nila & McNamee sheds light on the current best practices inknowledge management implemented in the Industrial Research Institute (IRI) group ofcompanies. The study was a baseline study designed to find out to what extent organizationalpractices are designed to facilitate the transfer of tacit knowledge across specific organizationalbarriers. The study found that the information is not clear and that the design or practices are notconsistent across the organizations. Likewise, it was found that the time frames for theimplementation of systemic programs for the access of internal knowledge also were notconsistent. This article acts as a form of an “eye opener” for organizations slow on the uptake ofthe importance of knowing their knowledge base and system of knowledge diffusion within theorganization.Critical AssessmentThe study has some problems in that it focuses on only large companies whose cultureappears to have been keenly focused on R & D and/or engineering innovation and state of the artprocess and technology. The lack of a defined sample retracts from the power that the articleimparts especially to non-members in the IRI group of companies. Knowing a reasonable amountof information on the sample would make the article more in line with a well-rounded researcharticle. However, the information imparted in the article is of great importance to the furtherunderstanding of KM in organizations and the issues encountered in its practice andimplementation.34
  35. 35. Gaputiene, I. (2003). Knowledge management in organizations. Management Of Organizations:Systematic Research, (28), 55-69.Research Methodology and FindingsThis study focus on answering the question of how knowledge is transferred from thehome company to the foreign owned satellite and what is the part that expats play in the processof transferring knowledge back home. The study uses the framework based upon the knowledge-based theory of the firm. The methodology of the study is a qualitative case study using theinterview instrument. Gaputiene, 2003 found that expats contribute new knowledge developmentin the areas of sales, operations, financial, and management work methods. Other findingssuggest that locals possess a content specific knowledge vs. an expats context of a moregeneralizable knowledge that has been developed via collective knowledge. The author attributesthis knowledge as coming from the organization and is related to the socialization and thedevelopment of tacit knowledge. According to Gaputiene both expats and locals gainedsignificant knowledge from each other, but in varying degrees and subject areas. However, bothagree that the expat experience is needed in an organization and the availability of suchemployees is in short supply and once depleted will not be easily replenished. Gaputienesuggests further studies be conducted to relate the knowledge investigation process to theorganizations performance goals and to develop a further understand of an organizations value ofacquired knowledge based upon its particular situation. The article provides suggestions forpractice through a need for considering knowledge management in the succession planningprocess with a focus on organizational objectives towards projectization in order to developknowledge storage and dissemination methodologies.35
  36. 36. Critical AssessmentGaputiene use of the semi-structured interview works well for this study. However, thesmall sample size does lean towards a validity issue with only six expatriate interviews and sixlocal interviews. Gaputiene’s focus is upon the “experience” of the interviewees and this iscrucial to the basic formulation of tactic knowing, the qualitative approach is used successfullyto obtain insight into the workings of how tactic knowledge is absorbed and disseminated.Gaputiene’s study is timely as many organizations have foreign owned subsidiaries no matterwhere, as it seems all countries are having a shift in their economies. The author notes this facetas it relates to the individual organizations needs and objectives towards remaining competitivein the global market place. Likewise, the author’s insights into the economic factors related tocurrent KM practices originated with the seminal theorists of KM (Keynes, 1953; Polanyi, 1966;Simon, 1960) who were initially economists and KM theory developed out of economic theories.Haldin-Herrgard, T. (2000). Difficulties in diffusion of tacit knowledge in organizations.Journal of Intellectual Capital, (1)4, 357 – 365. Retrieved from Emerald Database http://www.emeraldinsight.com/journals.htm?articleid=883915&show=abstractResearch Methodology and FindingsHaldin-Herrgard (2000) attempts to set a theoretical foundation for this study thatdeveloped models and methodologies for the sharing of tacit knowledge in organizations throughempirical analysis of the knowledge management field. The authors main focus is on how is tacitknowledge diffused, and what are the methods employed by the current experts in the field to36
  37. 37. share their tacit knowledge with others? Haldin-Herrgard performed a literature review andfound that the interest in tacit knowledge is on the rise. This rise in the interest of tacitknowledge has also caused a need for organizations to learn how to diffuse their tacit knowledgethroughout the workforce. Organizations face a quandary as Haldin-Herrgard also uncovered thatthis knowledge may not be able to be absorbed and utilized within the organization. The authorfound that tacit knowledge is difficult proposition but one that holds promise. The authorsuggests that further studies be done in order to explore in what way sharing occurs and how it isdiffused and the types of methodologies utilized. If tacit knowledge is to be part of theorganizations core competencies or source of completive advantage the organization mustcommit to a broad KM initiative that incorporates a rationality and solid logic keyed towards theorganizational objectives so as not to create a farce out of KM.Critical AssessmentThe article is presented in a well-rounded and comprehensible manner. The writing is topnotch and the author addresses the audience succinctly. However, the author did not present aclear theory on KM in the article, but did focus upon a clear problem with the learning anddiffusion of tactic knowledge in an organization. Likewise, the relevant concepts were clear andeasily followed throughout the article. Haldin-Herrgard makes many connections with theseminal theorists, predominantly Polanyi, and relates the difficulties of implementing the“teaching “of tacit knowledge. The author sheds light on the conflicting nature of KM in thatcertain aspects of tacit knowledge have more significance to various organizational units and37
  38. 38. content applicability to the needs of the individual department. This also applies to how theorganization delivers it’s training and contextual culture to its employees.Jakubik, M. (2011). Becoming to know. shifting the knowledge creation paradigm. Journal ofKnowledge Management, 15(3), 374-402. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/13673271111137394Research Methodology and FindingsJakubik, 2011 presents a conceptual study that offers a contemporary view of thediscourse on knowledge management (KM) and intellectual capital (IC) with the progression ofthe knowledge creation theory. To get to the heart of the matter Jakubik ask the question of whatis wrong with knowledge management? To answer this query or at least contribute to thediscourse the author proposes to frame KM in the becoming to know framework. The paper isextensive in its scope and depth. Jakubik aligns with the conventional wisdom that KM/IC is indanger of becoming a purely scholarly pursuit. Of major interest and importance is the authorsfocus on the social implications of knowledge management. Jakubik sees this as the communityperspective in which knowledge is intrinsic in our action, interactions, and present in oursituational specific context. Jakubik sees the need to explore KM/IC from the ontological andepistemological aspect of knowledge creation and a view of the developing theory of the firm.Likewise, from this development the need to be self-critical and receive criticism from fellowresearches and thought leaders is needed and welcomed in the KM/IC community.Critical Assessment38
  39. 39. There is a proliferation of articles on KM from nineteen hundred and ninety four to twothousand and eleven the article address this vast contribution the theory and practice of KM. Theauthor identifies the need for additional concepts and frameworks. The introduction of thebecoming to know framework and the becoming epistemology concept frame the ontologicalissues in knowledge creation. It has been found that KM practices are foremost a customapplication to individual organizations KM must be adapted to the individual needs andcapabilities within the organization. Jakubik, 2011 sees and address this issue with the need of astandardized vocabulary for KM this is crucial to the field and as Jakubik referenced Styhre,2003 who commented on this need. Jakubik, unfortunately adds to the chaos by yet another callfor change and this is a real quandary for KM as KM is still seen as being in its embryonic stagein the academic community and address the fear that KM may remain a scholarly pursuit and notan organizational objective as a core process, However, Jakubik address the issue of KMcustomization within organizations with the findings that the community view of socialization ofKM is essential as the author notes that this is evident in “how people interact and createknowledge in a specific community, how community members perceive value of collaborativeknowledge creation” (Jakubik, 2011, p, 375)Karni, R., & Kaner, M. (2008). Knowledge management of interconnected decisions withapplication to project management. Knowledge and Process Management, 15(4), 211–223.Research Methodology and FindingsKarni & Kaner, 2008 use a case-based reasoning (CBR) Dyad-based approach that asksthe question of how the CBR and DBR approach creates a viable decision making and39
  40. 40. knowledge creation system? The methodology is a project based format in that it is developedutilizing the process group framework developed by the Project Management Institute’s (PMI)Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK). As presented the proposedsystem will aid in the decision making process and will develop increased learning capabilitieswhen implemented. The authors concluded that this system is highly effective for use in projects.Critical AssessmentKarni & Kaner, 2008 claim that decisions are an act of creating new knowledge. Thisclaim seems far reaching in that a decision is a course of action. It a common theme that decisionmaking is a function of leadership, that stems from an individual or group relating the currentdecision to previously experienced scenarios, a decision based upon new information and/orknowledge gained though metrics designed to discover potential risks or probabilities. Theeffects of the decision will not be known until reviewed or compiled into a lessons learnedanalysis for success factors and/or end results obtained from the action. Early KM theory stemsfrom tacit knowing and is a function of experience and review that creates tacit knowledgepresented by Polanyi, 1966 within a group or individual. The effects of a decision oncechronicled is explicit knowledge that can then be codified and diffused thus creating the cycliceffect of knowledge creation and diffusion within a system.Ma, Z., & Yu, K. (2010). Research paradigms of contemporary knowledge managementstudies: 1998-2007. Journal of Knowledge Management, 14(2), 175-189. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/1367327101103233740
  41. 41. Research Methodology and FindingsThe Ma & Yu, (2010) study is an investigative/exploratory analysis of knowledge flowsusing a citation analysis and a co-citation analysis. The paper creates a knowledge map of thecourse of knowledge between KM academics and their networks, current themes and the relationbetween them. Ma & Yu start by asking the question of what is knowledge management, andhow good are its works? Ma & Yu also strive to know what are KMs future prospects and needsfor future development. The authors found that several major journals Organization Science,Harvard Business Review, and Strategic Management are the leading contributors to KM. Theyalso found these periodicals are crucial to communicators of KM for the forums used todisseminate KM studies. However, KM is largely in non-specific KM journals. Other findingsinclude that contemporary KM research is organized along different concentrations of interest;the essentials of knowledge management, knowledge based theory of the organization,innovation organizational learning and the strategy of knowledge management. This study opensa window on the contemporary thoughts and perspectives on KM trends and practices and thecentral themes which are being discussed in the trade and peer reviewed journals. Ma & Yusuggest that future research be focused upon the analysis of current paradigms and key researchthemes in KM studies and how they relate and what they represent. Likewise, future studies onthe relationship between KM research and industrial practices would prove beneficial to the fieldof KM.Critical Assessment41
  42. 42. There appears to be a common theme running through much of the research and that isgetting a grasp on the mired paradigms and the direction that the research is developing into byattempting to trace the evolution of KM from the research. The study does what it sets out to doit develops a road map for scholars to utilize in their attempt to comprehend the relevantpublications producing KM literature. How useful this will be is questionable as suggested thatstatus via prestige and positions are highly subjective. Previous studies have confirmed that KMhas different meanings and value to different users this is shown through their findings that KMis more prevalent in trade journals that its own publication, this is yet again another study thatfinds that KM is still undeveloped as a field and has a context that is highly diversified forbusiness applications. The authors find that KM has gained the reputation as a legitimate fieldand that it is still evolving and that KM will become more prominent in academia.Nielsen, B, B. (2005). Strategic knowledge management research: Tracing the co-evolution ofstrategic management and knowledge management perspectives.Competitiveness Review, 15(1), 1-13. Retrieved fromhttp://search.proquest.com/docview/213050376?accountid=14872Research Methodology and FindingsNeilson performed a literature review that spanned over forty years of research onknowledge management (KM). Neilson sought to trace the role that knowledge plays ininterorganizattional collaborative arrangements though the framework of strategic managementin the current literature by plotting the direction of knowledge management. The study showsthat knowledge generation is a growing concern for large globalized organizations and that the42
  43. 43. need for further knowledge application is needed to keep abreast of the hyper-competitive globalmarket place. To meet this challenge, organizations will need to develop more strategicpartnerships to facilitate knowledge acquisitions or create network structures of alliances,knowledge networks, and joint ventures to create and integrate external and internal knowledgethat develops into a synergistic effect between the elements.Critical AssessmentLittle is known about what role knowledge-related motivation plays in the formation ofstrategic alliances and what rational and intent will allow for the optimal conditions to create thissynergy to occur between the elements. Neilson believes that much will depend upon the type ofalliance and the industry. Using the literature review is highly effective in this study however;most studies are from an organizational strategic management perspective of the evolutionarypath based upon a content view and a process view while ignoring the basic foundations of KM.While noted briefly, Simon (1960) and Polanyi (1966) developed the early model of the role ofknowledge development in the organization. This was viewed as a dynamic system similar towhat Neilson describes as a “synergy” that would be developed internally. The promise of anexternal synergy through contemporary developments in relationships between traditionaladversaries speaks towards a new development and path for knowledge management bur oneshould develop the internal path before setting on the external one.Park, B. I. (2011). Differences in knowledge acquisition mechanisms between IJVs with westernvs Japanese parents. Management Decision, 49(3), 422-443. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/0025174111112078943
  44. 44. Research Methodology and FindingsThis study by Park, 2011 perceives KM through the absorptive capacity theory firstproposed by Chen & Levinthal in 1990 and later by Kim in 1998. This study is of the highestquality and addresses all the requirements for a comprehensive research study. Park asks thequestion of are learning mechanisms in International Joint Ventures (IJV) with Western vs.Japanese parents different? Likewise, another question stemming from this query is what are thecritical differences of knowledge absorption behaviors affecting learning patterns between IJVswith Western vs. Japanese parents? Park performed a survey of two hundred and forty six firmswith a documented response rate of twenty point thirty eight percent thus non response bias wasminimal. The survey was Likert-like three item scale with a range of one to five. The findingsrevealed that intensity of efforts, possession of relevant knowledge, and active assistance offoreign parents in technological management are significant determinants of absorptive capacitythat positively enlarge the extent of technological acquisition for IJVs. Park concludes that thetype of knowledge, different information, and industry affects the pattern of knowledge transfer.The implications for practice are that management decision knowledge sharing must be acorroborative effort to achieve results. Park suggests further studies be conducted to find thepattern of the types of knowledge transferred, types of information, and the specific industryfactors.Critical Assessment44
  45. 45. The article is easy to read and has a logical flow and has all the elements of a manuscriptwritten at the doctoral level. There is an area of the findings that is worthy of note and that is thefinding that this study is inconsistent with other studies of like nature and is addressed by theauthor. However there is one area of the studies hypotheses, particularly H4 Participation offoreign expatriate experts the findings show that expats are not evident in both Western andEastern assessments for sharing of knowledge this is in contrast to Gaputiene, 2003 whosefindings show that expatriates play an integral part in knowledge creation and diffusionGaputiene does acknowledge that this diffusion is a difficult endeavor but that the findings weresignificant. Likewise, this brings up another area of contention with this study in that only Eastand West were predominantly addressed and this is also shown to be of note in that Gaputiene’sstudy is on Lithuania that could be a reason for Park’s finding that Eastern and Westernorganizations do not place any emphasize on expatriates’ knowledge factor as the Europeans.Pathirage, C.P., Amaratunga, D. G., & Haigh, R. P. (2007). Tacit knowledge andorganisational performance: construction industry perspective. Journal ofKnowledge Management, (11)1, 115 – 126. doi:10.1108/13673270710728277http://www.emeraldinsight.com/journals.htm?articleid=1595401&show=abstractResearch Methodology and FindingsPathirage, Amaratunga & Haigh, 2007 use the knowledge based view of the organizationas the theoretical perspective for their article. The authors try to answer the question of what roledoes tacit knowledge have in the construction industry? The authors use a literature review andsynthesis as the study’s methodology. They have found that the construction industry needs tofocus more on human capital and its management to increase performance. The study reveals45
  46. 46. that the importance of tacit knowledge in the organization as it relates to performance andcompetitive advantage. The study has implications for practice in showing decision makers in theindustry a path towards performance improvements through development of knowledge workersin the industry through increasing the development and diffusion of tacit knowledge as anorganizational initiative.Critical AssessmentThis is another study that calls for a wakeup call for KM in its industry as stated by theauthors, the construction industry is an industry with vast amounts of knowledge albeit, mainlyexplicit knowledge. The paper is well situated for its intent and audience and that would bedecision makers in the UK construction industry. This is also a limitation as only UK literaturewas utilized. This develops a concern for the validity of the study and is addressed satisfactorilyby the authors. The use of a literature review for this study does not reveal any new finding butdoes bring the issue to the forefront through the expert compilation and presentation of theresearch this also brings to light the difficulty of creating new knowledge within the constructionindustry and its educational and training practices form an individual and organizationalperspective. .Peng, J., Moffett, S., & McAdam, R. (2010). Knowledge management in china: A review.Journal of Technology Management in China, 5(2), 158-175. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/17468771011053171Research Methodology and Findings46
  47. 47. The study by Peng, Moffett & McAdam, 2012 uses the approach of Western knowledgemanagement theory with a survey results analysis methodology that seeks to answer thequestions of what are the difficulties of implementing KM in China, and how to solve thesedifficulties through knowledge management practices? Peng et al found that China’s knowledgemanagement lacks direction and corroboration between industry and academics. The authorsconclude that a new knowledge management model specifically designed for China is needed,one that is based upon the cultural philosophy that develops management decision skills formand organizational learning platform. The study hopes to encourage both industry and academicsthat research into the understanding of Chinese culture and analytic direction of KM studies inthe area of the service sector is essential for the budding knowledge economy in China.Critical AssessmentPeng’s study is significant for anyone who will be conducting business in china andshows the difficulty facing business endeavors with partners in emerging market economies. Thefining that knowledge management clashes with the traditional Chinese culture is of deepconcern as knowledge sharing is a key point in success of joint ventures especially in otherEastern economies (Park, 2011). The study has limited generalizability issues in that it onlyfocus upon the service sector and may or may not be transferable to other industrialcommunities. Likewise, the study only focuses solely upon Chinese business, and not on the vastamount of joint ventures or foreign owned subsidiaries located in China using Chinese personneland the effect of KM within these organizations.47
  48. 48. Siddique, M. C. (2012). Knowledge management initiatives in the United Arab Emirates: Abaseline study, Journal of Knowledge Management, (16)5, 702 – 723.http://dx.doi.org.ezp.waldenulibrary.org/10.1108/13673271211262763Research Methodology and FindingsThis article is an exploratory study to determine; what is the state of knowledgemanagement in the United Arab Emirates Another question asked by the author is; does a KMinitiative facilitate transition to a knowledge-based economy? The former question is not directlyanswered in this study but is seen by the author as a driver of knowledge economy. The studyfinds that initiatives in Dubai and Abu Dhabi are in the early stages of development. That theyhave a low level of organizational storage of knowledge and that half of the organizationssurveyed are unaware of KM philosophy and its concepts. The author concludes that KM willneed to be adopted by organizations on an organizational objective platform to be successful.Likewise, intuitions need to advance KM through a collective perspective especially throughR&D. The expectations for practice in the Emirates are that this study becomes a knowledgebase that can be utilized by organizations to develop KM initiatives and methodologies withintheir organizations. That author suggests further studies be conducted through a baseline study ofknowledge based economy and KM innovation in the UAE.Critical AssessmentThe author presents a comprehensive study of two UAE countries. The study is aquantitative study using a survey instrument and the study shows significance in its findings of48
  49. 49. high correlations with consistent alpha findings of above 0.70. Siddique, 2012 reveals that due tothis a common global variable “KM adoption” is evident. The study paid a lot of attention to itsscales and concerns for its validity of which the study addresses satisfactorily. However, oneissue of contention is in the sampling and the author address this issue in that the majority ofrespondent’s came from the government sector, thus having a dearth of respondents from thelarger private sector. This brings to light an issue with emerging economies in that the transitionis multifaceted with a market economy and a knowledge economy, subsequently in countries thathave a greater involvement of government control of a “resource based economy” such as thegulf oil states this produces a considerable challenge.Yilmaz, Y. (2012). Knowledge management in E-learning practices. TOJET: The TurkishOnline Journal of Educational Technology, 11(2), n/a. Retrieved fromhttp://search.proquest.com/docview/1288340617?accountid=14872Research Methodology and FindingsThe study takes a different turn in that this study focuses upon the e-learning and knowledgemanagement as a system. The author seeks to answer the question of; how can e-learning andknowledge management be integrated? The author uses a literature review as the methodology tothis question utilizing the concept of the knowledge spiral model from Nonaka & Takeucdhi,1995. The author finds that the integration of e-learning with knowledge management processcan create synergies to significantly improve the creation of new knowledge. Yilmaz, 2012, hasdetermined that a knowledge management model must be formalized and the integration solutionshould be evaluated within this framework. The author suggests that in practice organizationsmust create and utilize knowledge applications maps and knowledge asset maps in order to49
  50. 50. facilitate greater performance. The author also recommends that future research focus uponknowledge management models.Critical AssessmentThis study addresses a need in the application of educational activities in organizations.The author focuses upon e-learning a means of creating and diffusing knowledge through the useof multimedia technology. This study, while significant and informative has several fundamentalmisconceptions. The author relates that tangible assets and by inclusion that explicit knowledgefalls into this category are finite/limited assets. Knowledge while “intangible” has a tangibleelement in explicit knowledge and the diffusion of both tacit and explicit knowledge should be apart of any knowledge management model. The author addresses both tacit and explicitknowledge and albeit this point is minor in and of itself the conception that knowledge is a total“intangible” asset is not. Only tacit knowledge should be seen as intangible (Polanyi, 1960) andthen only until it is codified and recorded for diffusion. Yilmaz also sees that knowledge cannotbe directly managed and thus adds to its intangibility and unfortunately further enhances itsmystique. The other main misconception is that learned knowledge is not able to be developedinto explicit knowledge the author does note the importance of this process. However, the authordoes not detail how this can be accomplished. The author mentions that the tacit knowledgegained by the “staff” should be transmuted into explicit knowledge and in this there is a key toknowledge management in that “experience” is a major component of any KM methodology.50
  51. 51. Literature Review EssayThe discipline of knowledge management as presented in the Breadth componentportrayed a comprehensive overview of the foundations of knowledge management theory that isreflected in the current literature. The Breadth was presented as a fundamental guide forimplementing KM initiatives and programs in organizations from a theoretical perspective. Fromthe Breadth an organization can assess when to develop a KM system that improves the KMprocess within the organization. An organization must assess its objectives in relation to itscurrent view on KM with its long term objectives. This Depth Literature Review is presented asa conversation on current issues and trends in KM resulting in developing an encyclopedic bodyof knowledge for KMCurrently there is a consensus across all industries that there is a shortage within theworkforce for knowledge workers and technology workers. When an organization, industry, ornation finds itself with a labor shortage, of any type steps need to be taken to remedy thesituation to remain profitable and competitive in the global arena. KM is designed to meet thisneed and this determination (problem noted) is the critical milestone for determining toimplement a KM system to train and develop the needed workforce. Corporate Universities’and corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives with institutes of higher learning (Abela,2012) are two avenues available to meet this need. When to make this decision is best answeredfrom the Breadth, as Simon, 1960 stated no decision can be made until it is seen as a problemand its level of importance can be determined and a course of action plotted. Waiting foracademia to forecast future industrial training and development for the fast paced global business51
  52. 52. environment is naive at best and at its worst shows an ignorance of organizational managementprincipals and is another indicator that a KM system needs to be placed upon the agenda.It is the conventional wisdom that organizational change should start with “small wins”and KM also needs to be implemented with small wins to develop an organizational wide buy-into the change in culture that any new initiative requires. Organizations that seek to develop a newcore process (Earl, 2010) such as KM need to attach to it the knowledge that the organizationrequires. One such area is project management this new area of knowledge can be incorporatedwith the project teams and both KM and PM (Karni & Kaner, 2008; Pathirage, Amaratunga &Haigh, 2007) share the basic underpinnings as shown in the Breadth. Both Keynes and Simonforetold the need for “special resources” within the organization and thus becomes anotherindicator for KM implementation. These special teams need to be given the necessary resourcesto be effective (Abela, 2012).Subsequently this literature review essay will be reflected in the Application that seeks topresent a solution for a problem to its audience, in order that a decision is made. This is the goalof the article by informing organizational leadership through a foundational perspective of KMthat has core organizational practices presented through the lens of Simon’s organizationaltheory, Keynes’s theory of employment, and Polanyi’s theory of tacit knowing that wasdeveloped in the Breadth component.The discussion will begin by developing and accessing the current themes in KM ascomponents of a KM system. Like any guide, a knowledge management body of knowledge52
  53. 53. (KMBOK) is needed in order to draw upon in order to construct a KM program. This view issupported by Earl, 2001 who understands that KM can be defined in many was and that there aresignificant choices in both what to do and how to do it. Earl also declares a need for relevantmodels for KM; this study is one such model. However, Earl does not make anyrecommendations and this perspective on KM theory fills that gap in the literature. And as such;not all components will be needed or applicable to a nations or organizations current anddeveloping KM needs and situation. Karni & Kaner, 2008 also presented a study thatincorporated elements of the PMBOK (PMI, 2008) process groups and related it to decisionmaking while useful is not a KMBOK that this current work seeks to create, However, Karni’srevelation is more in line with a tool and and/or technique along with developing metrics andretrieval systems for knowledge diffusion, acquisition and storage of lessons learned. With thatsaid let us begin.The EnvironmentKnowledge-Based EconomyBroadly, and in relationship with the foundational view of KM developing fromeconomics, the current trend towards a “knowledge-based economy” (Siddique, 2012) this iskeenly shown with the development of the knowledge economy index (KEI) as presented byPeng, Moffett & Macadam’s, 2010 study on how KM can be implemented in China in responseto China’s budding knowledge economy. Meng (2008) first related China’s progression towardsa knowledge economy (as cited by Peng, et al, 2010). Peng, et al. (2010) declares that developing53
  54. 54. a knowledge-based economy and culture is of a high-priority to the leadership of China and adecision to develop China into a knowledge-based economy is important in the integratedglobalized market economies confronting the nations and organizations of the twenty-firstcentury. The index is prepared by the World Bank and is presented in its knowledge economycomparison table (Peng, et al. 2010) of the world’s most influential economies. Other authors inthis review also acknowledge the impact of the knowledge economy (Earl, 2001; Gaputienu,2003; Ma & Yu, 2010; Nielsen, 2005; Pathirage, Amaratunga & Haigh, 2007; Siddique, 2012)on the nation, organization, and industry.Knowledge-Based OrganizationAny country that is a knowledge-based economy would have its counterpart in aknowledge-based organization (Gaputienu, 2003; Peng, et al. 2010; Siddique, 2012). Thus, KM’srelationship with economics becomes even more apparent and develops the foundational theoryof KM that reflects the organizational structure, culture, and behavior. Siddique, 2012 relates theUnited Arab Emirates (UAE) drive towards a knowledge-based economy as well as Gaputienu,2003 who’s analysis KM through international joint ventures (IJV) to determine the worth ofKM in such situations. Subsequently, other parts of the theory come into play through theorganizations’ objectives developed through a KM strategy (Pathirage, Amaratunga & Haigh,2007) who likewise, relate KM strategy with the theoretical lens of the knowledge based view ofthe organization. Albeit, their study focuses upon the UK construction industry, this then,becomes another acknowledgement that KM is many things to many industries and disciplines.54
  55. 55. That is as the literature shows and in this study as well as all the others that their findingscan be generalized through the KM theory represented through a body of knowledge (BOK).Knowledge-based organizations will also have an “innovation strategy” as presented by Ma &Yu, 2010 in that they try to determine what future course KM will take, and that organizationsare turning to KM in seeking an innovation strategy. The findings were attained though theanalysis of citations and co-citations in conjunction with a social network analysis to determinethe current KM paradigms, research themes and their relationship with industrial practice.Knowledge Management Process AreasOrganizational BehaviorAccording to Ajzen (1991) governments, organizations and institutions have beenpreviously viewed through the perspective of “general attitudes” this has been replaced with theconcept of “aggregation” that any behavior has its manifestation developed from the atmosphereof the general disposition as well as external factors that are specific to the behavior Ajzen(1991). This is well situated for understanding the behavior of a knowledge-based organizationand can be adapted as a metric to measure the level of KM maturity within any given individual,organization, or institutions. It is the conventional wisdom in management practices that if youcannot measure it you cannot improve it Ajzen’s theory of planned behavior is well suited to“predict and explain human [or organizational] behavior in specific contexts” (p. 181).55
  56. 56. The key indicator is the intention to perform the behavior as presented in the Breadth theknowledge-based organization develops and nurtures its behaviors that expand and optimize itsrepository of knowledge. Thus, a knowledge-based organization develops the mechanisms todeliver its knowledge throughout the organization. This is related by Newman and Conrad(1999) as “organizational agents” that develop the encyclopedic knowledge that makes theunique traits specific to the organization. Likewise, any organizational behavior of KM shouldreflect an air of dynamism and shifting values that develops originality and creativity.Gaputienu (2003) relates that KM processes are an “internationalization process” (p. 55) and thatan organization is constantly learning once an organizations learning is stagnated it ceases to be aknowledge-based organization. However, this view may or may not be well received asorganizations focusing solely on explicit knowledge and its acquisition may still be within thegeneral concept of the knowledge-based organization albeit, not a “knowledge-creatingorganization”. Gaputienu also supports to idea that the knowledge-based organization is in a stateof “continual expansion and improvement of the knowledge base in the organization” (p. 55).This view is from acquiring new knowledge from external sources such as alliances, jointventures, and foreign markets that aid in developing the total organizational knowledgecapability through the expatriate employee’s experience. The act of seeking external knowledgereflects a behavior of KM while not all organizations will seek knowledge through internationalpartnerships in the form of “inter-organizational collaboration” (Gaputienu, 2003, p. 58)however, in today’s environment of globalization some form of relationship with internationalorganizations will be necessary to conduct business.56
  57. 57. This supports that seeking external knowledge is a behavior of the knowledge-basedorganization. Pathirage, Amaratunga & Haigh (2007) in their study on tacit knowledge in theconstruction industry also acknowledge that an organizational behavior of KM reflects the“organisations’ efforts to deliberately manage knowledge in a systematic manner” (p. 116). Theyalso like Gaputienu see that KM is seen as a core process within the knowledge-basedorganization. However, the authors also note that many organizations view knowledge as“information” and this also is in support for the view that some organizations will seek onlyexplicit knowledge and fail to address the tacit knowledge aspect of KM. In this there is aproblem that will be further explored and analyzed in the following section on knowledgemanagement knowledge areas.Organizational StructureAn organizations structure is situated to promote commands being disseminatedthroughout the organization in the most expeditious and accurate manner possible. Theorganizations structure should facilitate communication. In the Breadth hierarchy anddecentralization were address from the perspective on a situation of “complexity” that will facean organization this view that structure will shift with the challenges that develop in the day today life of an organization (Neilson, 2005). This view is partially supported by Fetterhoff, Nila &McNamee (2011) in that an organizations structure that supports KM will allow knowledge tocross “generational, tenure, or hierarchical barriers.57
  58. 58. The research by Fettterhoff, et al. shows that if KM is to be successful that no matterwhat structure is emplaced within an organization and that knowledge must flow from onedepartment to the next or as presented by Gaputienu (2003) they must flow between the parentcompany and the foreign owned subsidiary. Finding by Fettterhoff showed that most effectivetransfer of knowledge was observed with cross-functional teams the authors also noted thatfacilitating the creation of “weak ties” (p. 52) was a means to create knowledge transfer acrossboundaries.This structure is also viewed as “concurrent engineering” that utilizes a “design team” inrelation to product design and production (Reid & Sanders, 2010) that removes the barriersbetween functional departments. Creating teams and teamwork appears to be an effective meansto diffuse knowledge throughout the organization. Organizations that take a projectized view orhave a significant amount of problems or projects to solve/complete have a basic frame-workthat is complementary to KM. Inherent in this approach is problem solving and subsequentlylearning new knowledge through external acquisition or internal creation Reid and Sanders donot address this perspective from their view of operations management this omission is anothersupporting facet for KM integration through the organizational structure. However they do notethat developing problems will be monitored by the team and process will be studied for futureimprovements (p. 65).Nielsen (2005) confirms this view in that the organizations decisions will cause arestructuring of the organization (p. 1). This view is limited to strategic management of the firmand Nielson sees this as a strategy to increase knowledge in order to attain a competitive58
  59. 59. advantage with the view as quoted from Chandler “structure follows strategy” (as cited inNielsen, 2005). Likewise, Neilson also supports the view that firms have specific and cumulativecompetences that are “generating, exchanging and combining resources in order to create newcompetencies and capabilities” (p. 2). Nielson also supports the view that knowledge must beable to cross the barriers between functional departments and even geographical and culturalones (p. 8). Neilson sees the structure of a “headquarters-subsidiary division of labor withcentralized, one-way information flows” (p.10) as a thing of the past and a structure that has anetwork of multi-directional knowledge flows will be the structure that emerges from thecomplexities of the global market place.Organizational CultureThe organizational culture defines the values and beliefs that the firm is based upon. AKM culture puts knowledge as its key value and the employees’ behavior is in line with the viewthat knowledge is the foundation that attains the organizational objectives of the firm. Earl, 2001declares that KM is “central to…organizational adaption and renewal” this can be seen aspromoting a culture of KM that increases organizational performance through creatingknowledge. A KM culture will have as one of its core competencies KM. This view is alsoshared by the seminal theorist on the desirability of having a KM culture in an organization or asNielsen, 2005 states “Knowledge was seen as a critical competence of the firm that could-andshould-be managed effectively” (p.6) through KM.59
  60. 60. Today there is a need to initiate a culture of KM within organizations this is not as easyas it sounds (Earl, 2001) buy in is crucial as the seminal theorist view of an organization was thatthis was second nature in the organization in today’s global environment of rapid change andpotential global partnerships organizations tend to go with what’s tried and true. This wouldseem to a contradiction as to then what has changed in the mind-set of individuals developingpresent day organizations? Speculative, it is a generational shift and perhaps not greater or less, atechnological one. As the company Oldsmobile used to advertise “It’s not your father’sOldsmobile” likewise, these are not Keynes, Polanyi’s, and Simons organizations KM is a longterm objective one that many authors see as one that needs to be nurtured and developed and onethat you just cannot “buy”.What passes today as KM is managing the “new” knowledge of the moment one canprobably trace this development to the dot. com Era of the nineteen eighties were massiveorganizations became a “flash in-the pan” leading to the current trend or “restructuring”“mergers and acquisitions” and today the helping and healing hand of putting organizationsthrough “bankruptcy”. It can be assessed that these developments took a lot of the knowledge outof organizational repositories and placed it in the hands of individuals thus creating the monsterCEO and the current horizontal organizational structures that are emerging in response to theperceived problems that this method developed.Modern management theory sees the need for organizational design as did the seminaltheorist. Today, organizational design follows a more organic or adaptive design and as the early60
  61. 61. theorist stated the environment will dictate what designs an organization follows, during times ofuncertainty an organizations will gravitate towards a more hierarchical or mechanistic design andthe culture will likewise need to shift towards this new development. Current trends inorganizational designs follow a team approach with authority decentralized in increasinglysmaller units working as integrated parts of the whole.The influence of the external culture cannot be understated or ignored in the case of KM.This is more pronounced in cultures developing their new economic models based onknowledge. Likewise, there is a previous and concurrent culture that embraced a “marketeconomy” or never instilled it. According to Peng, et al. 2012 it is the technological limitationsand cultural limitations that effect KM in the nation of China whose culture is communityfocused with a large power distance due to these factors swiftly changing organizational culturetowards KM is highly problematical (p. 161). External culture also has its effect on managerialbeliefs. Peng notes that China’s culture is well situated for the “long term” through interpersonaland informal networks that will influence organizational behavior with dramatic effects. Of noteis the finding by Lin and Kwok (2006) that in Chinese culture it is common to hoard knowledge(as cited in Peng, et al. 2012) and this factor has been addressed by the seminal theorist as onethat will be a great inhibitor to establishing KM as a core competence in cultures with similarnational or organizational cultures..Innovation61