Factors Affecting KM Implementation in the Chinese Community

Factors Affecting KM Implementation in the Chinese Community

Yang Lin (McGill University, Canada) and Kimiz Dalkir (McGill University, Canada)
Copyright: © 2010 |Pages: 22
DOI: 10.4018/jkm.2010103001
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This paper reviews past research on KM to identify key factors affecting Chinese KM implementation. It begins with a chronological overview of 76 KM related publications, followed by two separate discussions of socio-cultural and non-socio-cultural factors affecting KM implementation within the Chinese community. A preliminary typology of these factors is proposed. In addition to individual factors that have direct impact on how people behave in the process of KM implementation, specific factors that strongly influence Chinese KM implementation are: (1) relationship networks and collectivist thinking, (2) competitiveness and knowledge hoarding, (3) management involvement and support, and (4) organizational culture that encourages knowledge sharing and learning and that minimizes knowledge hoarding. Several directions for future research are also presented.
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When KM started gaining attention from the Western community, China was experiencing dramatic changes. The “Open Door” policy, announced in 1978 by Deng Xiaoping, was an alarming signal indicating that soon China’s original centrally planned economics were going to be replaced by market economics. As a result, Chinese business managers who used to wait for direct orders from the government were suddenly thrown into the unfamiliar territory of market competition and autonomy. In order to survive, they must discard their old mental models and be ready to learn new knowledge and skills about how to judge, analyze and lead in this completely novel situation. Unsurprisingly, business leaders turned to Western management theory, distilled from Western market economics, as a model to emulate.

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