Academic journal article Review of Business

Knowledge Management Implementation in Developing Countries: An Experimental Study

Academic journal article Review of Business

Knowledge Management Implementation in Developing Countries: An Experimental Study

Article excerpt

Abstract

Managing knowledge efficiently and effectively is considered a core competence for organizations to survive in the long run. The evolution and implementation of Knowledge Management (KM) is still in its infancy stage in most developing countries. Therefore, it is not easy to compose a comprehensive and applicable KM framework. The main purpose of this study is to disclose the core processes of KM and figure out the relationship between these processes and KM performance, based on data collected from 200 employees. This paper considers the important issue of how managers can measure the value of their organization's knowledge and discusses approaches to measure or manage knowledge. The results reveal that there is a positive relationship between KM processes (sharing, generation and storage) and KM performance. The paper emphasizes the importance of knowledge sharing and distribution, particularly for organizations in the manufacturing sector and also indicates that there is a positive relationship between the managerial role in production and organizational performance.

Introduction

In the last few decades, we have been witnessing a socio-economic transformation based on knowledge. Advanced information and communication technologies are at the heart of this transformation (Mansell and Wehn, 1998), which has been dramatically changing the established world order following the industrial revolution (Hope and Hope, 1997). In the new order, knowledge is considered as the fundamental means of wealth creation and prosperity and one of the most important driving forces for business success (Riege, 2007). Knowledge is the only meaningful factor of production in the "post-capitalist" society, where the main challenge will be the productivity of knowledge work and knowledge workers (Drucker, 1993). From the business perspective, an organization's success to a great extent depends on its capability to leverage knowledge and produce value from its knowledge resources. In an economy where the only certainty is uncertainty, the one sure source of lasting competitive advantage is knowledge (Nonaka, 1998). When markets shift, technologies proliferate, competitors multiply and products become obsolete almost overnight. Successful companies are those that consistently create new knowledge, disseminate it widely throughout the organization and quickly embody it in new technologies and products (Nonaka, 1998). According to Storey and Barnett (2000), Knowledge Management (KM) is the only promising medium of gaining sustainable competitive advantage for organizations in the long run.

The development of information technologies during the past few years has enabled many organizations to improve both the understanding and the dissemination of information. The development of powerful databases allows information to be organized in a manner that improves access, increases speed of retrieval and expands searching flexibility. Furthermore, the Internet now provides a vehicle for the sharing of information across geographical distance that encourages collaboration between people and organizations. Manufacturing agencies across the United States have begun to adopt innovative knowledge management technologies to aid in the management of manufacturing information. The nature of the managerial task is to develop component knowledge, as well as to develop architectural knowledge critical for the integration of one or more interacting sets of routines. The role of the primary leader is to support the creation and application of networks to examine knowledge gaps. In addition, effective leadership identifies and breaks down obstacles to maintaining healthy network interaction. It seems that the time has come to move from the more simplistic view of data or information assets towards the more dynamic, path dependent and complex role of knowledge in the value creation process of modern businesses.

Knowledge Management in Practice

The knowledge management challenge is twofold, depending on the type of knowledge involved. …

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