Next-Generation IT for Knowledge Distribution in Enterprises

Next-Generation IT for Knowledge Distribution in Enterprises

Ramón Brena (Tecnologico de Monterrey, Mexico), Gabriel Valerio (Tecnologico de Monterrey, Mexico) and Jose-Luis Aguirre (Tecnologico de Monterrey, Mexico)
Copyright: © 2009 |Pages: 11
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-859-8.ch027
OnDemand PDF Download:


From the Knowledge Management perspective, Knowledge distribution is a critical process in organizations. As many of the other Knowledge-related processes, it has received basic support from Information Technologies in the form of databases and repositories, client-server systems and other standard IT. Nevertheless, most basic IT tools fail to provide the flexible environment Knowledge distribution needs to be effective in many organizations. In this chapter we review some very advanced IT that are being proposed for supporting Knowledge distribution processes. Even though they are not mainstream technologies nowadays, they show actual trends that are expected to materialize in future generations of IT for Knowledge distribution.
Chapter Preview


The key factors that determine success in companies and national economies rely on effectiveness in gathering and managing knowledge nowadays (United Nations, 2000).  In economies based on knowledge, creation, distribution, and use of information to generate knowledge increases opportunities for development. In this context of increasing economic importance of knowledge, Knowledge Management (KM, Beckman, 1999) has emerged with the goal of taking advantage of information and knowledge every company owns. Most authors in KM agree with the need for executing the processes of generating, storing and distributing knowledge.

The process of generating knowledge encourages continuous improvement and growth through innovation, generation of new ideas, pattern recognition and development of new processes (Ruggles, 1997). Storing process implies keeping information in the organization repository; this is the organizational memory of the company. Finally, distribution has the goal of making available useful information to the members of the company in the shortest time. This fact allows users to access the information no matter where they are.

One of the strongest catalysts of KM has been the necessity for managing large amounts of information efficiently (Carrillo, 1999). Aside from the importance of generating and storing the necessary information in order to generate knowledge, the efficient distribution of such information has become a relevant subject last years. In companies, sharing knowledge resources via distribution is essential for two reasons: first, because it avoids duplicating efforts to obtain and maintain knowledge. Second, because it encourages consistent decision-making since all employees have access to the same knowledge (Probst, Raub & Romhardt, 1999).

In spite of its importance, most of the information stored in a company repository is never used since it is not distributed efficiently. Nowadays, one of the most challenging issues is the time spent by employees searching for information already stored in their repositories (Dalkir, 2005). Introduction of IT in every aspects of society has allowed storing and generating gigabytes of information, however, it hardly reaches relevant people at the right time. According to Sarnikar (2007), in order to accomplish an efficient information flow, proactive KM technologies are required; these technologies should automate and control distribution of information. Although many techniques of distribution and filtering have been developed last years, providing the right knowledge to users in the right context, continues being a complex issue (Sarnikar, 2007).

We can safely conclude that IT has not supported in a satisfactory way Knowledge Distribution (KD) processes. In this situation, solutions could come from several fronts:

  • Develop and refine KM strategies that could improve KM processes efficiency with the current IT sophistication level;

  • Introduce more flexible and sophisticated IT tools that could provide a more flexible and better support to KM processes.

In this chapter we investigate the second possibility, though having in mind that KM strategies refinement is also an essential issue, which is being explored by researchers and practitioners (Liebowitz, 2005).



Many IT tools and strategies have been used for supporting KD. For the sake of classifying them, we could identify two “pure” strategies for sharing knowledge that they support (Albino, 2004)

Key Terms in this Chapter

Social Networks: The set of human relations in an organization, which exist independently of whether or not they are analyzed; as a discipline, social networks is the study of those interrelations.

Virtual Spaces: A simulated place in an information system, like a working group. Some virtual spaces incorporate virtual reality concepts, but in enterprises it is not common practice

Asynchronous Tools: Information tools where it is not necessary the participation of several involved parties at the same time.

Ontologies: Definition of classes of objects, attributes, properties and relations to other objects, expressed in Semantic Web markup languages such as OWL.

Digital Repository: Set of interrelated electronic documents, stored in files or a database, usually classified in categories and other criteria, that stores knowledge useful to an enterprise or other organization.

Enterprise Portals: Specialized websites, common in big enterprises, where a logged-in user can access a wealth of information services.

IT (Information Technologies): Set of technologies related to electronic information processing.

Negroponte’s Delegation: A human user can delegate a task to a synthetic agent, meaning that the latter is going to carry it out on behalf of the former.

Taxonomies: Tree-like classifications.

Symbolic Information: Information written as sequences of symbols, which is normally text, as opposed to images, sound, etc.

Knowledge Management: Discipline that studies the efficient use of knowledge in enterprises and other organizations.

Collaborative Work Platforms: Computer-based systems which help users to interact so they can collaborate to perform tasks in an organization.

Information Filtering: Process that eliminates (filters out) part of a given information, leaving just what is believed to be useful.

Forums and Boards: Electronic discussion lists, where participants can “post” a new comment, respond to a previous post, etc.

Semantic Web: A set of technologies aiming to allow machines to reason about the content of internet documents.

Complete Chapter List

Search this Book:
Editorial Advisory Board
Table of Contents
Jatinder N. D. Gupta, Sushil Sharma, Mohammad A. Rashid
Jatinder N. D. Gupta, Sushil Sharma, Mohammad A. Rashid
Chapter 1
Nancy Alexopoulou, Panagiotis Kanellis, Mara Nikolaidou, Drakoulis Martakos
Efficient response to change, both upon expected and unpredicted contingencies, is a critical characteristic for modern enterprises. This chapter... Sample PDF
A Holistic Approach for Enterprise Agility
Chapter 2
Hossana H. Aberra
SAP Business Blueprint is a vital part of SAP implementation exercise. A well-defined business blueprint may set the foundation for successful... Sample PDF
What is SAP Business Blueprint?
Chapter 3
Rogerio Atem de Carvalho
This chapter introduces the key aspects of Free/Open Source Enterprise Resources Planning systems (FOS-ERP). Starting by related work carried out by... Sample PDF
Free and Open Source Enterprise Resources Planning
Chapter 4
Brian H. Cameron
Business process modeling (BPM) is a topic that is generating much interest in the information technology (IT) industry today. Business analysts... Sample PDF
The Changing Nature of Business Process Modeling: Implications for Enterprise Systems Integration
Chapter 5
Alok Mishra
In the age of globalization, organizations all over the world are giving more significance to strategy and planning to get an edge in the... Sample PDF
Enterprise Resource Planning Systems: Effects and Strategic Perspectives in Organizations
Chapter 6
Gary P. Moynihan
An executive information system (EIS) is a software system designed to support the informational needs of senior management. The EIS is... Sample PDF
An Overview of Executive Information Systems
Chapter 7
Joseph Bradley
Enterprise Resource Planning systems have proven difficult and costly to implement. Organizations must consider the risks and rewards of embarking... Sample PDF
Enterprise Resource Planning System Risks and Rewards
Chapter 8
Andrea Masini
After observing that the pervasiveness of IT may soon render it strategically irrelevant, management scholars have recently questioned the value of... Sample PDF
ERP-Driven Performance Changes and Process Isomorphism
Chapter 9
Ronda R. Henning
The application software life cycle considers the functionality of a given collection of components within the context of a consumer’s requirements... Sample PDF
Application Integration within the Enterprise Context
Chapter 10
Sanjay Mathrani, Mohammad A. Rashid, Dennis Viehland
A significant investment in resources is required for implementation of integrated enterprise systems as technology solutions while the... Sample PDF
The Impact of Enterprise Systems on Business Value
Chapter 11
Charlotte H. Mason, Aleda V. Roth
Growing competitive pressures and escalating customer demands have led businesses to sophisticated information technology to manage costs and... Sample PDF
The Right Path to SCM-CRM Integration
Chapter 12
Euripidis Loukis, Ioakim Sapounas, Konstantinos Aivalis
This chapter is dealing with the alignment of enterprise systems with business strategy and its impact on the business value that enterprise systems... Sample PDF
Enterprise Systems Strategic Alignment and Business Value
Chapter 13
Sanjay Mathrani, Mohammad A. Rashid, Dennis Viehland
The market for enterprise systems (ES), continues to grow in the post millennium era as businesses become increasingly global, highly competitive... Sample PDF
Enterprise Systems in Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises
Chapter 14
Kerstin Fink, Christian Ploder
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are a vital and growing part of any national economy. Like most large businesses, SMEs have recognized the... Sample PDF
Integration Concept for Knowledge Processes, Methods, and Software for SMEs
Chapter 15
Tobias Schoenherr, Ditmar Hilpert, Ashok K. Soni, M.A. Venkataramanan, Vincent A. Mabert
Although the research on integrated enterprise systems (ES) is proliferating, the knowledge base about ES implementations, usage and experiences... Sample PDF
Enterprise System in the German Manufacturing Mittelstand
Chapter 16
Darshana Sedera
Organizations invest substantial resources in acquiring Enterprise Systems, presumably expecting positive impacts to the organization and its... Sample PDF
Size Matters! Enterprise System Success in Medium and Large Organizations
Chapter 17
Joseph Bradley
ERP implementation projects normally involve a single vendor providing the packaged software for the entire system. Although most companies follow... Sample PDF
Implementing Best of Breed ERP Systems
Chapter 18
Ganesh Vaidyanathan
Enterprise resource planning systems are complex yet single, integrated software programs that runs off a single database so that the various... Sample PDF
Enterprise Resource Systems Software Implementation
Chapter 19
Calin Gurau
This chapter considers the importance of business modelling for implementing e-CRM systems. The introduction of e-business models requires the... Sample PDF
Restructuring the Marketing Information System for eCRM: An Application of the Eriksson-Penker Method
Chapter 20
Albert Boonstra
At the present moment, many hospitals are going through a process of change directed at the integrated delivery of health care. Enterprise Systems... Sample PDF
Analyzing an ES Implementation in a Health Care Environment
Chapter 21
S. Padmanaban
ERP systems have become key enablers of businesses today. While many organizations wish to adopt ERP for competitive advantage, they find choosing... Sample PDF
Designing to Deploying Customisable ERP Cost Effectively
Chapter 22
Mateja Podlogar, Katalin Ternai
This chapter introduces the ERP systems, their complexity, and especially their integration in higher education as a significant challenge for many... Sample PDF
ERP Systems in Higher Education from Regional Perspective
Chapter 23
Valentin Nicolescu, Holger Wittges, Helmut Krcmar
This chapter provides an overview of past and present development in technical platforms of ERP systems and its use in enterprises. Taking into... Sample PDF
From ERP to Enterprise Service-Oriented Architecture
Chapter 24
ERP and Beyond  (pages 329-345)
Suresh Subramoniam, Mohamed Tounsi, Shehzad Khalid Ghani, K. V. Krishnankutty
Enterprise-wide automation has already transformed the relations among suppliers, purchasers, producers, and customers. Conventional ERP helps only... Sample PDF
ERP and Beyond
Chapter 25
Gita A. Kumta
The chapter introduces the essence of ERP in government as a tool for integration of government functions which provides the basis for citizen... Sample PDF
E-Government and ERP: Challenges and Strategies
Chapter 26
Manish Gupta, Raj Sharman
A paradigm shift is occurring in identity management philosophy. User-focused identity management is one the emerging and most promising paradigms.... Sample PDF
Emerging Frameworks in User-Focused Identity Management
Chapter 27
Ramón Brena, Gabriel Valerio, Jose-Luis Aguirre
From the Knowledge Management perspective, Knowledge distribution is a critical process in organizations. As many of the other Knowledge-related... Sample PDF
Next-Generation IT for Knowledge Distribution in Enterprises
About the Editors
About the Contributors