Deploying Knowledge Management for Effective Technologies in Higher Education Partnerships

Deploying Knowledge Management for Effective Technologies in Higher Education Partnerships

Enis Elezi (Teesside University, UK) and Christopher Bamber (Organisational Learning Centre, UK)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-4846-2.ch012
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Abstract

The Higher Education sector is rapidly changing and is in a current state of flux because of the changing global demand of students. To cope with this dynamism, Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) are entering into partnerships to combine competences and market presence. The purpose of this chapter is to provide a better understanding of Knowledge Management (KM) in HEIs and discuss the role of communication and organisational learning when working in partnerships. The authors present developmental stages of a higher education partnership so that deployment of underutilised KM technologies can be identified at each stage. The chapter then identifies KM factors specifically useful for the evaluation stage of a higher education partnership; thus, measurement of those factors could foster organisational learning more easily. The chapter also provides a discussion of underutilised technologies in HEIs and explains how improving utilisation would enhance institutional and cross-institutional performance.
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Introduction

The Higher Education sector’s current collaborative culture is aimed at building resilience and coping with the dynamics of global educational change. However, there are many underutilised technologies in Higher Education Institutions (HEIs), especially when considering the stages of partnership development and the potentially significant role of technology in communication and learning across institutions. Even though, communication and learning practices are well rooted within UK HEIs there is indication that existing practices could be further developed and as a result that would enhance knowledge creation capacities. The following sections further point out that although embedded KM practices and activities support social capital development, it is expected that HEIs could exploit their available underutilised technologies better to improve their impact on social capital from partnership ventures.

HEI executives, governors and leadership teams should explicitly include KM training in staff Continuing Professional Development strategies and should promulgate an understanding of their institute’s Social Impact as these will not only benefit themselves but will also benefit HE partnership development. Scholars, HE policy makers and HE practitioners of KM can gather a range of insights, presented through the following sections, pointed at fostering communication and learning, with underutilised technologies in the Higher Education context.

Therefore the objectives of this chapter are to:

  • Identify the developmental stages of a Higher Education Partnership so that deployment of underutilised knowledge management technologies can be identified at each stage.

  • Propose Knowledge Management factors specifically useful for the evaluation stage of a Higher Education Partnership thus, if those factors where measured organisational learning could be fostered more easily.

  • Provide discussion of underutilised technologies in Higher Education Partnerships and explain how improving utilisation would enhance institutional and cross-institutional performance.

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Background To The Hei Context

The crucial purpose of Knowledge Management (KM) in Higher Education is to make certain that performance is maintained at desired results through knowledge creation. The modern context of global Higher Education is such that, HEI collaborative ventures are widespread and becoming normal. Many HEIs are developing sustainability, resilience and growth through partnership development (Bamber & Elezi, 2020a; Bordogna, 2019; Guerrero et al., 2019). For high performance of partnerships it is essential that knowledge management factors are managed to effectively maintain and transfer knowledge to all partnership staff. Empirical research by Bamber & Elezi (2020b) focused on the three important factors of evaluation associated with performance management and knowledge creation with respect to social capital; monitoring and review meetings and; continuing professional development. The following sections build on that research, which was particularly helpful, as evaluation in Higher Education has been underutilised and often misunderstood. The focus of this chapter is therefore the fostering of communication and learning with underutilised technologies in Higher Education.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Academic Partnerships: A partnership between several universities to collaboratively facilitate the delivery of learning opportunities.

Learning Performance: A measure of how well students are learning in terms of knowledge and skills development.

Communication: An exchange of information between people or systems.

E-Learning: Learning facilitated by online technologies.

Higher Education: University education in which courses are taught at the undergraduate, postgraduate, and doctor level.

Knowledge Management: The process of managing information and resources efficiently within an organisation.

Collaboration: The act of working together cooperatively.

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