Academic journal article Library Philosophy and Practice

Perception of Knowledge Management among LIS Professionals: A Survey of Central Universities in North India

Academic journal article Library Philosophy and Practice

Perception of Knowledge Management among LIS Professionals: A Survey of Central Universities in North India

Article excerpt


The launch of the concept Knowledge Management (KM) can be traced from the last decade of the 20th century, when it begins and faddish in the business world. Business world recognized the momentous of knowledge in the global economy of the knowledge age. In the new knowledge economy, the custody of important and tactical knowledge and its interminable regeneration empower corporate sector to addendum competitive profits. The applications of knowledge management have now reached to other sectors, encompassing Universities, Governmental units, Research and Development section etc. (Lee, 2005).

Knowledge management (KM) is "a collection of processes that govern the creation, dissemination, and utilization of knowledge in an organization" (Newman, 1991). According to IFLA, KM is "a process of creating (generating, capturing), storing (preserving, organizing, integrating), sharing (communicating), applying (implementing), and reusing (transforming) organisational knowledge to enable an organisation to achieve its goals and objectives". It includes the management of explicit knowledge (i.e. knowledge that has been codified in databases, web pages, documents, etc.) and sharing of tacit knowledge (i.e. skills, expertise, or know-how) (Ajiferuke, 2003). In libraries and information centers, explicit knowledge is created inside the organization, such as minutes of meetings, theses, memos guidelines, reports, etc. or obtained from extrinsic sources, including databases, books, government information, journal articles, etc. However, tacit knowledge, embedded in minds of workers with a comprehensive knowledge of rules and regulations, work procedures, etc. (Wijetunge, 2002). Tacit and explicit knowledge, both is deliberate as the most important sources of knowledge of a library, the management of which should be done with utmost care and should be the prime motto of any library (Ajiferuke, 2003).


Different library and information science (LIS) professionals perceive KM differently, and the present literature suggests that there is no worldwide consent of how and to what level knowledge management is linked to library and information science.

Most of the authors consider KM as an oxymoron (Broadbent, 1998), a nonsense management whim (Wilson, 2002) and some of the scholars sees it as a method of management (Shanhong, 2000). According to (Koenig, 1997; Davenport and Prusak; 1998) define KM as librarianship or information management by another name (Koenig, 1997; Davenport and Prusak; 1998). In spite of a link between information management and knowledge management, many scholars made an attempt to differentiate KM from librarianship and information management (Morris, 2001; Todd, and Southon, 2001). Many scholars perceived that KM is an old concept (Hawkins, 2000) and a new name for what library professionals have been doing for years (Ajiferuke, 2003; Townley, 2001). Roknuzzaman and Umemoto (2009) delineate knowledge management as librarianship in new clothes (Roknuzzaman and Umemoto, 2009).

Several studies have focused on attitude of Library professional about the knowledge management and its implementation in libraries and information centres. According to Nazim and Mukherji (2013) there is a variation in the understanding level of the KM concept among librarians (Husain, and Nazim, 2013), but the majority of them had positive attitude towards KM and its integration in libraries and information centers (Roknuzzaman and Umemoto, 2009). Although, attitudes towards knowledge management were not linked with librarians' experience and no sector wise and gender wise major differences were examined in librarians' attitudes (Rahmatullah and Mahmood, 2013). The majority of library professionals considers that KM creates new job opportunities and also helps in the development of libraries and the LIS profession itself (Sarrafzadeh, Martin, and Hazeri, 2006). …

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