Knowledge Codification and ICT Use in Business Networks

Knowledge Codification and ICT Use in Business Networks

Ettore Bolisani (University of Padua, Italy) and Enrico Scarso (University of Padua, Italy)
Copyright: © 2011 |Pages: 9
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-931-1.ch049
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The notion of networks in business, i.e. structures of heterogeneous relationships between firms interacting for business purposes (Todeva, 2006), is not new in the economic literature. Today, however, this concept is becoming popular again since the diffusion of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) and the globalization of competition have led to the emergence of new inter-organizational forms that the literature denotes with various terms (e.g. extended/virtual enterprises, global networks, knowledge networks, extended supply chains, etc.), and are characterized as follows: 1. companies interact with other companies, often on a regular base, because they are not able to manage all the knowledge needed to pursue their strategies in a global and turbulent environment; 2. there is a subdivision of tasks and activities among business partners, but also shared goals whose achievement affects the success of the individual company; 3. companies are scattered globally, and make intense use of ICT applications to communicate.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Business Network: Structure of heterogeneous firms interacting for a business purpose.

Hard Codification: Complete formal codification of knowledge contents, aimed at exploiting the potential of ICTs fully.

Detached Knowledge Object: Combined approach of hard and soft codification to distinct parts of a knowledge object.

Formal Codification: Kind of codification where the language used to code a particular content is highly structured, formalised and unambiguous.

Soft Codification: Codification of the knowledge content that preserves it tacitness.

Knowledge Explicitation: Process of articulating tacit knowledge into explicit knowledge with the help of metaphors, analogies, and other signs.

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