Epistemology and Knowledge Management

Epistemology and Knowledge Management

Jeremy Aarons
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-933-5.ch248
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This article surveys and explores the relationship between epistemology and knowledge management (KM). Epistemology is the branch of philosophy concerned with the nature and extent of human knowledge (Klein, 1998b). Knowledge management is clearly deeply indebted to many ideas derived from epistemology. Much of the seminal work in KM discusses epistemology in a fair amount of detail, and explicitly appeals to insights from epistemology in developing a theoretical account of KM. In particular, the groundbreaking works by Sveiby (1994, 1997, 2001), Nonaka (1994), and Nonaka and Takeuchi (1995) make explicit appeal to the philosophical insights in epistemology, which has provided the groundwork for much of their pioneering work in knowledge management. One would thus expect there to be a fairly intimate connection between epistemology and knowledge management. The relationship between these two fields, however, is far from straightforward.

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