Modeling and Analyzing Perspectives to Support Knowledge Management

Modeling and Analyzing Perspectives to Support Knowledge Management

Jian Cai (Peking University, China)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-092-9.ch007
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This chapter introduces a generic modeling approach that explicitly represents the perspectives of stakeholders and their evolution traversing a collaborative process. This approach provides a mechanism to analytically identify the interdependencies among stakeholders and to detect conflicts and reveal their intricate causes and effects. Collaboration is thus improved through efficient knowledge management. This chapter also describes a Web-based information system that uses the perspective model and the social network analysis methodology to support knowledge management within collaboration.
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Previous knowledge management approaches can be generally classified into two categories (Hanson, Nohira, & Tierney, 1999). The strategies supporting knowledge replication provide high-quality, fast, and reliable information systems implementation by reusing codified knowledge. The strategies supporting knowledge customization provide creative, analytically rigorous advice on high-level strategic problems by channeling individual expertise. The codification approaches view information technology as the central infrastructure of knowledge-based organizations. KMSs are thus treated as system-integration solutions or applications that retain employees’ know-how. The major concern of these approaches is how to help organizations monitor the trends of rapidly changing technologies and inventions in order to recognize new applications that may provide competitive advantage (Kwan & Balasubramanian, 2003). However, IT is just one of the elements of KMS. As knowledge management involves various social and technical enablers, the scope, nature, and purpose of KMS vary during the collaboration processes. Researches from the knowledge-customization perspective focus on understanding knowledge and its relationships with organizations (Becerra-Fernanaez & Sabherwal, 2001; Nonaka & Takeuchi, 1995). A typology of knowledge creation and conversion of tacit and explicit knowledge was proposed (Nonaka, Reinmoeller, & Senoo, 1998). The conversion involves transcending the self of individuals, teams, or organizations and reveals the importance of organizational architecture and organizational dynamics to capitalize on knowledge. Recent research on knowledge management has been focusing on developing models that interconnect knowledge management factors, such as collaboration, learning, organizational structure, process, and IT support (Lee & Choi, 2003). These research works have been mainly addressing understanding the nature of knowledge and knowledge management. Both approaches provide workable models and methods for implementing knowledge management.

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