Preserving Knowledge: A multi-faceted Process


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Describes knowledge preservation. Outline: overview, knowledge assets, KM processes, preservation through networks. Includes precervation value chain

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  • This presentation is divided into three parts. We’ll start by describing why and how the knowledge services framework was developed. The knowledge organization will compare content management and knowledge service approaches for structuring knowledge management in an organizational context. The knowledge environment will consider how an organization interacts with its clients and, in the case of governments, with all citizens. So, let’s look at how the framework was developed.
  • Although we don't know what the knowledge economy will eventually look like, there is general agreement that it will be very different. Adding value will be less dependant on processing atoms and more dependant on processing bits. A CD-Rom is worth about 75 cents, but the software it contains may be worth several hundred dollars. The ability to create new knowledge is seen as the only sustainable competitive advantage. The designers of Canada’s $2 centennial coin certainly recognized the importance of the knowledge economy
  • A knowledge organization emphasizes the stocks and flows of knowledge as affected by knowledge work. The first flow is from "nature" into the PSTP’s or a common knowledge pool. The flow rate is controlled by creation - the primarily role of science and technology projects. Creation increases the stock of knowledge. Once it has been created, knowledge can be managed as an asset to maximize it’s value both to PSTP and the security sector. Preservation reduces the outflow of knowledge from the existing stock into the infinite sink of lost knowledge. Sharing involves people and groups both inside and outside the PSTP. Sharing does not reduce the stock of knowledge; acquiring knowledge from external sources increases it. The value of knowledge is realized by using it. Using knowledge also does not reduce the stock. Ultimately, knowledge management links creation and use.
  • We begin with content – the raw material of information and knowledge services. There are four kinds of content. This slide lists some examples of each type. Definitions are available in the Knowledge Services Task Group report. All types of content are acquired, organized, preserved, and made accessible. However, managing each type of content involves a specialty, with its own best practices, vocabularies, and uses. Libraries and records are specialized versions of collections and information, respectively.
  • We’ll begin by looking at some of the attributes of knowledge that make it so different from traditional assets.
  • Here are some examples of explicit knowledge.
  • These are some examples of tacit knowledge. Tacit knowledge is difficult to quantify, capture, and preserve. Tacit knowledge is critical to an organization, however, because people must use what they know to create and use knowledge and the ability to create and use knowledge may be the only sustainable competitive advantage.
  • Finally, determining the value of knowledge remains a difficult challenge. We understand some of the processes that can influence the value of knowledge. Although we cannot yet rigorously measure the value of knowledge, many groups, such as the American Productivity and Quality Center are working hard to resolve this problem.
  • This presentation is divided into three parts. We’ll start by describing why and how the knowledge services framework was developed. The knowledge organization will compare content management and knowledge service approaches for structuring knowledge management in an organizational context. The knowledge environment will consider how an organization interacts with its clients and, in the case of governments, with all citizens. So, let’s look at how the framework was developed.
  • Thomas Stewart provides a simple definition of knowledge capital. Note that knowledge can be both explicit and tacit.
  • This slide shows knowledge preservation as a value chain. That is, as a sequence of stages, with increasing value at each stage. First, we have the kind of work that is done at each stage (list the five). Then, there is the type of person that does the work (list the five). Finally, we have the type of output that is produced (list the five). Ultimately, preservation is the foundation of knowledge management. Without it, nothing else can follow. The next slides will describe each of these stages.
  • Knowledge preservation begins by capturing knowledge – a 1 st generation KM activity. Let’s put that in a business context. The Canadian Forest Service had a problem of not being able to find previously written briefing notes (sound familiar?). An Intranet database was developed to capture and share approved briefing notes. (1 st image) Approved briefing notes are entered by an administrative assistant through their desktop browser. This is a cut-and-paste process, with the addition of metadata, such as author, keywords, and document identifiers. It takes about 5 minutes to enter a document (2 nd image) Once entered, anyone can search the database, using a dozen categories, such as subject, date, location, or author. This results in a list of briefing notes that match the search criteria. (3 rd image) Clicking on any note results in a PDF copy on letterhead or a text document that can be copied into a new document. This saves a lot of time when preparing updates. The database archives all approved briefing notes in one place. It is used to quickly get up to speed on a new subject, determine the department’s position on an issue, and provide reports on work accomplishments. The bottom line is that to succeed, knowledge isn’t captured because it’s a good thing to do; it’s captured because there’s a business need.
  • There are many ways to organize knowledge, each with strengths and weaknesses. Librarians have been classifying knowledge since ancient times; departments do this through subject classification indexes. Every scientist is also familiar with discipline-specific thesauri for organizing terminology. These are, naturally, incompatible with departmental subject-based classification systems. Computers brought on automated keyword systems. Except that terms used by an author often don’t match those used by someone else. More recently, artificial intelligence has been used to developed “concept maps” of ideas rather than words. With Web 2.0 we are seeing “folksonomies,” where knowledge is organized by participants in social networks, based on popularity of usage. These are the bane of librarians and records managers. All of these methods are faced with interdisciplinary issues. For example, terms such as risk analysis have very specific meanings in the CFIA which differ from their meanings in other disciplines. And then there are familiar linguistic issues where terms don’t really have a counterpart in another language. The only solution is to provide multiple criteria for organizing and searching, so that regardless of a user’s perspective, they will find what they are looking for quickly and efficiently. Ultimately, if it isn’t easy, simple, and fast for people to organize their knowledge, the way they work , they won’t do it.
  • Today, storing knowledge depends more on technology than space (although physical collections will not disappear in the foreseeable future). List the elements. It’s important to understand that although technology is necessary, it is only one aspect of knowledge preservation.
  • Similarly, accessing archived knowledge requires a set of user-friendly tools. Summarize the list. I cannot overemphasize the importance of user-friendliness (initially) and user-centricity (eventually) for retrieving knowledge if the CFIA wants people to actually use the system.
  • Problem : Knowledge has not been traditionally viewed as an asset. It is difficult to locate knowledge assets in the CFS. Solution : Develop a process to inventory CFS’s knowledge assets. Develop a searchable database to enable anyone to find these assets by searching any field. This shows the web-based data entry page. Key attributes of this database are: Anyone can enter information about a knowledge asset. Once entered, only the author can modify or edit an asset. There is no management overview of the contributions. The quality of an asset is determined by the user.
  • The Canadian Forest Service conducted a survey of it’s knowledge assets to help design a comprehensive inventory. This is an essential first step, in that before you can manage something, you must know what you own. Based on survey responses, we divided our assets into ten categories. They are shown here ranked by the number of responses. Not surprisingly, as an S&T organization, we have a lot of data and physical collections. We also have documents, lists of stakeholders and documented organizational processes. Finally, we have presentations, briefing notes and agreements. All of these help us to function as an organization and deliver products and services to our clients. I am happy to say that we are about to launch a complete inventory of CFS’s knowledge assets.
  • Preserving knowledge isn’t a one-time operation. It must also be maintained. This list is essentially based on information management best practices. Summarize the list. The notion of life cycle management is well-defined for records, but not for data and knowledge management. Advent of a digital world also ushered in an information “dark age,” in which information is being lost at a faster rate than at any time in human history. For example…
  • I’d like to tell you a story about the information “dark age.” From 1930 through 1960, the Canadian Forest Service conducted fire behavior experiments at a dozen field stations across Canada. In the 1960s a forward-thinking manager transferred about 250,000 records from hundreds of field notebooks to punched cards. In the early 1970s I transferring the punched-card data onto magnetic tape and published a report on the file structure, associated metadata, and data inventory. In 1979, the research institute was closed and I accepted another position. I sent the data to the National Archives – Electronic Data Unit. By happenstance, I returned to the Canadian Forest Service in 1992. In 1994, I received a phone call asking if I knew where to find a punched-card reader in Canada. The conversation went something like this. Say what? We have three cabinets full of punched cards from the test fires and we need to analyse the data. Why not use the tapes that I produced? What tapes? Sigh! No one can find the tapes; all we have is the cards. Have you seen the report about the data? What report? Another sigh! Give me a few minutes and I’ll see what I can do. One phone call located the data at the National Electronic Archives. They gladly produced 4 PC-compatible CD-ROMS. And the published report was available from any forestry library in the world. Had I not returned to the CFS, it would have joined the ranks of NASA, which can’t find the blueprints for the Saturn rocket and the Los Alamos Laboratory, where no one understands the design of missiles built in the 1960s that are still deployed today.
  • This presentation is divided into three parts. We’ll start by describing why and how the knowledge services framework was developed. The knowledge organization will compare content management and knowledge service approaches for structuring knowledge management in an organizational context. The knowledge environment will consider how an organization interacts with its clients and, in the case of governments, with all citizens. So, let’s look at how the framework was developed.
  • Natural Resources Canada also set up a departmental wiki. If you’re not familiar with a tag cloud, that’s the table of words whose size depends on their frequency of use. This is also known as a folksonomy – let the users classify the subjects. Records managers – the writing is on the wall.
  • This is an organizational infrastructure that includes pretty much everything that is needed to run CSS. This applies to KM as well as anything else that we do. Simply put, people use tools and process within a governance structure to increase the value of content and services. It isn’t a matter of focussing on one or more parts of the infrastructure. All parts must be reflected in a task, project, or program if it is to succeed.
  • Many departments are mandated to produce content and to use it to achieve sector outcomes. Knowledge services show the flow of departmental outputs from generation through final use. We can think of the flow of services as a value chain, with several stages. Each stage involves one of three processes – embedding, advancing, and extracting value Four stages embed value; three advance it along the value chain, and three stages extract value from knowledge services. As previously, all of the organizational infrastructure and hierarchy are involved in every stage. The first five stages of the value chain are internal to a department – what can be managed. The last four stages relate to the sector and society – these can only be influenced. Content management is a key part of the management stage. The provider/user market model is represented by the vertical line between the organization and the sector. As you can see, knowledge services involve a lot more than transferring content. It also involves more than service delivery. Achieving sector outcomes and results for Canadians requires that the services be actually used to fulfill a want or need.
  • There are four types of “services;” each is a component of the knowledge services system. Each component has between five and 11 sub-components. Definitions of each component and sub-component are available, along with about 300 definitions of every part of the knowledge services system.
  • Information is exchanged in a transactional information markets, such as that shown here.. As with any market, there is a supply (information providers) and a demand (information users). Providers and users exchange information through a marketplace. This model applies when there are large numbers of autonomous providers and users and the role of the market is simply to facilitate information transactions. This model describes Government On-Line and a Global Disaster Information Network.
  • For example, this is the outgoing web portal that was used to share content within the Chemical, biological, radiological/nuclear Technology Initiative
  • This diagram shows how an agricultural innovation flows from the lab of the scientist in AAFC who created it to it’s final disposition. Many departments have a role in the process. If this value chain disconnects anywhere along the line, the innovation won’t succeed and all the work to that point will have been wasted.
  • This presentation is divided into three parts. We’ll start by describing why and how the knowledge services framework was developed. The knowledge organization will compare content management and knowledge service approaches for structuring knowledge management in an organizational context. The knowledge environment will consider how an organization interacts with its clients and, in the case of governments, with all citizens. So, let’s look at how the framework was developed.
  • This is the CRTI network, showing how each individual is connected to other individuals within and across domains. This is a closed network, as can be inferred from the “clear” boundary. Even though the network is closed, there are large possibilities for synergy and emergence to develop relative to individual effort. The color of the dots represents the domain and their size reflects the number of connections for each individual.
  • More importantly, each member of the network is also connected to the world’s knowledge. They can act as gatekeepers, to bring in knowledge from their discipline into the PSTP network. This can enormously leverage what the PSTP network can accomplish.
  • Preserving Knowledge: A multi-faceted Process

    1. 1. Preserving Knowledge A Multi-Faceted Process Albert Simard CSS Knowledge Manager Avoiding Knowledge Collapse October 20-21, 2009 Ottawa, Ontario
    2. 2. Outline <ul><li>Overview </li></ul><ul><li>Assets </li></ul><ul><li>Implicit </li></ul><ul><li>Networks </li></ul>(Library at Alexandria)
    3. 3. Knowledge Economy <ul><li>Success based on what you know </li></ul><ul><li>Knowledge is the primary asset </li></ul><ul><li>Value of goods based on knowledge content </li></ul><ul><li>Creating and using knowledge are key to sustained relevance </li></ul>Recognized in four Throne Speeches Overview
    4. 4. Knowledge Organization Overview External Knowledge Share Internal Knowledge Manage Use Integrate Preserve Lost Knowledge Create Nature, Society Content
    5. 5. What is Content ? <ul><li>Collections – objects & artifacts: books, documents, minerals, insects, plant materials </li></ul><ul><li>Data – facts & observations: elements, files, records, datasets, databases, statistics </li></ul><ul><li>Information – meaning & context: records, documents, reports, photos, maps, presentations </li></ul><ul><li>Knowledge – understanding & predictability: equations, models, learning, experience, know-how </li></ul><ul><li>Wisdom – experience & judgment: enables the correct application of knowledge </li></ul>Overview
    6. 6. Knowledge Attributes <ul><li>Total knowledge is increasing; half-life is decreasing </li></ul><ul><li>Knowledge can be in more than one place at a time </li></ul><ul><li>Knowledge can be used without being consumed </li></ul><ul><li>Selling does not reduce supply nor ability to resell </li></ul><ul><li>Buyers only purchase knowledge once </li></ul><ul><li>Once disseminated, knowledge cannot be recalled </li></ul>Thomas Stewart (1997) Overview
    7. 7. Explicit Knowledge <ul><li>Knowledge that has been formally expressed and transferred in a tangible form; intellectual property . </li></ul><ul><ul><li>databases, statistics, collections </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>books, publications, reports, documents </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>photographs, diagrams, illustrations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>computer code, expert systems </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>presentations, speeches, lectures </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>recorded experiences, stories </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>materials for education and training </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>laws, regulations, policies, procedures </li></ul></ul>Overview
    8. 8. Tacit Knowledge <ul><li>Intangible personal knowledge gained through experience and self-learning; influenced by beliefs, perspectives, and values. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>awareness </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>skills </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>mental models </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>expertise </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>judgement </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>wisdom </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>corporate memory </li></ul></ul>Overview The Thinker - Rodin
    9. 9. Knowledge Value <ul><li>Is very difficult to measure </li></ul><ul><li>Is extracted through use </li></ul><ul><li>Depends on the user </li></ul><ul><li>Increases with abundance </li></ul><ul><li>Is not well related to cost </li></ul><ul><li>Cannot be judged in advance </li></ul>Thomas Stewart (1997) Overview
    10. 10. Preservation: A Definition Prevent the irretrievable loss of content throughout its life-cycle by managing it in permanent physical or electronic media. NRCan (2007) Overview
    11. 11. Outline <ul><li>Overview </li></ul><ul><li>Assets </li></ul><ul><li>Indirectly </li></ul><ul><li>Networks </li></ul>(Library at Alexandria)
    12. 12. Intellectual Capital “ Intellectual capital is intellectual material … that can be put to use to create wealth.” Thomas Stewart Intellectual Capital (1997) Assets
    13. 13. Managing Knowledge Assets <ul><li>Capture: Represent explicit or tacit knowledge on reproducible media </li></ul><ul><li>Inventory: Find, list, and describe knowledge; map to business needs, value and prioritize </li></ul><ul><li>Needs: What needs to be known to accomplish goals; identify core knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Gaps: Difference between what is known and what needs to be known </li></ul><ul><li>Preserve : organize, store, search & retrieval, maintain and migrate throughout life-cycle </li></ul>Assets
    14. 14. Preservation Value Chain Preservation is the foundation of knowledge management Assets Capture Maintain Organize Retrieve Store Librarian Systems Manager Codifier Provider access inventory map capacity continuity
    15. 15. Capturing Knowledge NRCAN - Canadian Forest Service Assets
    16. 16. Organizing Knowledge <ul><li>Classification systems </li></ul><ul><li>Thesauri </li></ul><ul><li>Automated methods </li></ul><ul><li>Artificial intelligence </li></ul><ul><li>Folksonomies </li></ul><ul><li>Interdisciplinary issues </li></ul><ul><li>Linguistic issues </li></ul>Assets
    17. 17. Storing Knowledge <ul><li>IT/IM infastructure* </li></ul><ul><li>Systems - archive & manage content </li></ul><ul><li>Interface - entry & administration </li></ul><ul><li>Data base, data warehouse </li></ul><ul><li>Information system </li></ul><ul><li>Knowledge repository </li></ul><ul><li>Traditional & digital libraries </li></ul>* Shared drives are a simple but inefficient and ineffective approach. Assets
    18. 18. Retrieving Knowledge <ul><li>Access to content </li></ul><ul><li>Browser interface </li></ul><ul><li>Search engine </li></ul><ul><li>Extraction tools </li></ul><ul><li>Manipulation tools </li></ul><ul><li>Assembly tools </li></ul><ul><li>Retrieval system </li></ul>Assets
    19. 19. Knowledge Asset Inventory NRCan - Canadian Forest Service Assets
    20. 20. 531 assets; 211 responses Knowledge Asset Inventory 0 25 50 75 100 125 150 175 Data sets Physical Paper Stakeholders Organizational Media Presentations Commercial Briefing materials Agreements # of Assets Percent Number Assets
    21. 21. Maintaining Knowledge <ul><li>Content integrity </li></ul><ul><li>Content security </li></ul><ul><li>Access to content </li></ul><ul><li>Service standards </li></ul><ul><li>Life cycle management </li></ul><ul><li>Technology Migration </li></ul>Assets
    22. 22. Migrating Knowledge <ul><li>Paper </li></ul><ul><li>Punch cards </li></ul><ul><li>Paper tape </li></ul><ul><li>Magnetic tape </li></ul><ul><li>Computer disks </li></ul><ul><li>Floppy disks </li></ul><ul><li>Tape cassettes </li></ul><ul><li>Diskettes </li></ul><ul><li>CD-ROMS </li></ul><ul><li>Flash Drives </li></ul>Assets
    23. 23. Outline <ul><li>Overview </li></ul><ul><li>Assets </li></ul><ul><li>Implicit </li></ul><ul><li>Networks </li></ul>(Library at Alexandria)
    24. 24. CSS Knowledge Agenda - Levels Implicit Knowledge Assets Knowledge Sharing Knowledge Work Knowledge Markets Stock Flow Organization Environment Centre for Security Science Interaction
    25. 25. Preserving Through Sharing <ul><li>Storing knowledge in more than one place reduces the risk of loss. </li></ul><ul><li>Transfer: Disseminate knowledge from an organization to partners and practitioners. </li></ul><ul><li>Acquisition: Acquire knowledge from other organizations and store internally. </li></ul><ul><li>Exchange: Develop & implement systems to share knowledge across multiple organizations </li></ul>Implicit
    26. 26. DRDC – Centre for Security Science
    27. 27. Natural Resources Canada Implicit
    28. 28. Directory of Expertise & Skills Implicit NRCan - Canadian Forest Service
    29. 29. Preservation through Work <ul><li>Embedding knowledge in products and services preserves it during their life-cycle. </li></ul><ul><li>Generate: Bring knowledge into existence, deepen or broaden its meaning, or increase the amount held. </li></ul><ul><li>Transform: Increase embedded value through clarification, adaptation, or development. </li></ul><ul><li>Manage: Provide organizational infrastructure to enable accomplishing objectives. </li></ul><ul><li>Use Internally: Produce products and services to accomplish organizational mandate. </li></ul><ul><li>Learn: Use experience and intelligence to increase awareness and understanding. </li></ul>Implicit
    30. 30. Knowledge Infrastructure Implicit People <ul><ul><li>learning, motivation, rewards, incentives, staffing, skills </li></ul></ul>Governance roles, responsibilities, authorities, resources Processes work routines lessons learned, best practices, Content, Services data, risk analysis, reports, monitoring, operations, policies Tools systems to capture, store, share, and process content
    31. 31. Knowledge Services Value Chain Implicit Use Internally Use Professionally Use Personally Generate Transform Add Value Transfer Evaluate Manage Extract Advance Embed Legend Organization Environment
    32. 32. Products & Services Implicit Direction Plans Operations Positions Coordination Accomplishments Answers Advice Teaching Facilitation Support Laboratory Database Scientific article Technical report Outreach material Geospatial products Statistical products Standards Policies Regulations Systems Devices Objects Data Information Knowledge Wisdom Solutions Services Products Content
    33. 33. Preservation through Markets <ul><li>Disseminating knowledge through markets preserves it through diffusion. </li></ul><ul><li>Communications: Passive, one-to-many, one-way dissemination of approved messages and positions. </li></ul><ul><li>Transactions: Active, one-to-one, two-way exchanges of knowledge products & services. </li></ul><ul><li>Parallel: Transferring knowledge products & services owned by two or more providers. </li></ul><ul><li>Sequential: Two or more organizations sequentially develop and transfer knowledge products & services. </li></ul>Implicit
    34. 34. Transactional Knowledge Market Government On-Line Global Disaster Information Network Implicit Demand (Users) Providers and users connect through an Information Market Supply (Providers)
    35. 35. Implicit DRDC – Centre for Security Science
    36. 36. Frequently Asked Questions Implicit NRCan - Canadian Forest Service
    37. 37. Sequential Knowledge Market Agricultural Innovation Implicit Food product HC producers Idea scientists AAFC Innovation IC company Commercialized CFIA farmers Adopted retailers CFIA Market consumers HC Consumption Waste EC municipalities
    38. 38. Outline <ul><li>Overview </li></ul><ul><li>Assets </li></ul><ul><li>Implicit </li></ul><ul><li>Networks </li></ul>(Library at Alexandria)
    39. 39. Centre for Security Science Network The value of a network for preservation is in the many places where content is stored and pathways for retrieval. Networks
    40. 40. Global Knowledge Map Networks
    41. 41. Networks GoC – Treasury Board
    42. 42. Networks
    43. 43. Networks DRDC – Centre for Security Science
    44. 44. Networks
    45. 45. In the 21 st century knowledge is an organization’s most valuable strategic asset. The capacity to create and use it is the only sustainable competitive advantage. Without preservation knowledge is lost. Without knowledge an organization is lost.