Centre for Knowledge Exchange , who are we and what do we do and what relevance does it have on todays proceedings here at green build you may ask . Well here goes . We are in the business of Knowledge ……. Well here goes in 20 seconds per slides... a little insight into our world. Our university, you could say is in the business of Knowledge …….,. Historically universities served as reservoirs of knowledge (Basu & Sengupta 2007, p.274) and are still referred to today by many as ‘The Knowledge base’. We are re known for Intellectual Property rules and regulations and the need to protect our knowledge Our centre, a rogue within a traditional organisation , I like to think, is different we are not so much in the business of knowledge but in the business of creating environments for effective knowledge sharing.
By knowledge we mean ‘a familiarity with someone or something, which can include facts, information, descriptions, or skills acquired through experience or education’. It can refer to the theoretical or practical understanding of a subject. It can be implicit (as with practical skill or expertise) or explicit (as with the theoretical understanding of a subject); it can be more or less formal or systematic. Knowledge is what we all want , we as humans strive to impress with our knowledge and skills whether that be the latest innovative thinking , new ideas , open candid lessons learnt on a recent project ,or sharing evidence of what works , what doesn’t work , or exciting opportunities
I propose moving away from the traditional sense of gaining knowledge or that ‘knowledge is power’ that we strive to egotistically ------ towards the sense of the true value that can come from learning to share knowledge across discipline groups , society groups between students and professionals alike So how can you create the environment for effective knowledge sharing . A place where individuals overcome their ‘Knowledge is power’ mentality and cross boundaries and share and discuss topics of candid trueful value which will educate , inspire and even confuse others ?
I see a shift from knowledge is power to /knowledge Sharing is power ‘ and have been trying to identify key enablers for efffective knowledge sharing, and ways to create environments within networks and associated events that facilitate open communication and trust thereby enabling the sharing of open lessons from their workplace with others , even their competitors for the greater good of ‘learning’
Before I talk you through the identified enablers . Let me introduce you to Green Vision . An open Knowledge exchange network that focussed on Green Building , We have been running for over three years now , having started as a forum of 6 people sat in Browns in Leeds to an annual conference to a network that now holds monthly events and three conferences a year , well attended and above all supported by sustainability advocates and leaders from across all of the Built environment professional groups . The comments that come out from events are often around the huge amount of knwoledge sharing that takes place and the overwhelming need to go away and digest the new knowledge gained .
So how do we do it . What are the enablers ? I have picked 6 to focus on Create a community Humans are funny creatures, given a bit of time and freedom we will create our own little communities with subgroups and special interest groups where a trust build and we naturally share knowledge, stories and experiences People share in these communities. And its not a case of building a communities, but more that these communities will form, if you give people enough bandwidth, enough connectivity. With enough encouragement to join discussions of interest the space and technology, they find each other. It’s a much more effective way of doing things.
2. Common topic / theme of relevance and importance to members . People come together when they have a common interest they share and aspire to be part of that growing community responding to a particular issue , whether that be climate change or government strategy driving change
3. Stay Connected Make it easy, people will connect and find people who share similar interests and will share knowledge as a matter of course. Be a connector of people: the transaction cost of finding people, when you don’t know them, is very high. And it’s terrible. And it costs organisations money. So by being a connector you enable those exchanges to occur naturally . Social media and the use of twitter for online discussion groups and twitter for sharing discussions at events when not able to be there in person is great for keeping a broader network connected
4. Build trust Trust. Nothing happens if you don’t trust people. Creating an environment of trust at events is the greatest lubricant for knowledge sharing . It’s even better than information. Why should anyone do anything with anyone else, if they don’t trust them? And if you don’t trust people, what do you do in the absence of trust
5.. Foster a Culture of reciprocity Strong , inclusive well connected networks enable knowledge sharing and develop a sense of reciprocity so that it becomes the nrom at events . By this reciprocity what I mean by that is someone who asked you a question that is going to cost you something in time and effort, but you’re going to answer it, not because you owe that specific person a favor, but because the culture is one of reciprocity. It gets embedded in the norms.. You really see a difference. You can feel it when you walk around the events .
6. Be accessible to all Don’t be tempted by high delegate fees and the ‘exclusivity of a particular audience . It is all about the sharing of information , ideas and knowledge to promote collaboration and innovation . At green vision we keep ticket prices low and stream all conferences , enabling a diverse audience to tune in and take what they need from the proceedings of the day . Thi
So heres a bit on how to become part of one of our communities
Join our tweetchats
Become a network ambassador , a knowledge expert who presents and chairs at partner events on behalf of our networks , spreading the word