Learning about the Organization via Knowledge Management: The Case of JPL

Learning about the Organization via Knowledge Management: The Case of JPL

Lynne P. Cooper (Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, USA), Rebecca L. Nash (Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, USA), Tu-Anh T. Phan (Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, USA) and Teresa R. Bailey (Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, USA)
Copyright: © 2005 |Pages: 20
DOI: 10.4018/jkm.2005010103
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Abstract

This article describes the development and operation of a knowledge system to support learning of organizational knowledge at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), a U.S. national research laboratory whose mission is planetary exploration and to “do what no one has done before”. JPL 101 is a Web-accessible database of general organizational knowledge, captured in a series of quizzes. The heart of JPL 101 is the content that is encoded as questions and annotated answers with connections to related information and resources. This article describes the requirements generation process, implementation, and roll-out of the JPL 101 system. Data collected over 19 weeks of operation were used to assess system performance with respect to design considerations, participation, effectiveness of communication mechanisms, and individual-based learning. These results are discussed in the context of organizational learning research and implications for practice.

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