Knowledge management techniques

Assignment Help Management Theories
Reference no: EM13874

Question 1

The purpose of this question is to demonstrate understanding of the many-sided nature of knowledge management.

It addresses the broad learning objectives of:

Critically discuss the role and importance of knowledge management in today's organisations

Critically discuss the issues raised by language and cultural diversity in shared knowledge systems

Four are given below. The purpose of this question is for you to evaluate these definitions, and to reflect on your own interpretation of the subject.

A good operational definition of knowledge management is the deliberate introduction of an improved and more effective information environment.

[KM is] the capability of an organization to create new knowledge, disseminate it throughout the organization and embody it in products, services and systems.

Knowledge management is the behaviors and processes by which a group of people maintains and increases their personal and collective actionable knowledge to compete, to increase performance and innovation, and to decrease risk. (Parsons, 2004, p. 26)
Knowledge Management is about creating an environment that encourages people to learn and share knowledge by aligning goals, integrating bits and pieces of information within and across organizational boundaries, and producing new knowledge that is usable and useful to the organization.

(a) Briefly evaluate EACH of the definitions listed above for its usefulness to knowledge management, by considering the underlying assumptions of the definition and its scope.

You should consider such issues as: does it assume a particular view of knowledge (such as subjective/objective)? Is it more relevant to practice, or to theory? Is it relevant to a specific field (for example, business) or more generally applicable? Is it more applicable to a particular culture (for example, Western culture)? In your opinion, what are the most useful aspects of the definition, and why? (One page)

(b) Which of these definitions of KM best fits the way in which YOU view the world? Consider your background and study/work experience before this unit, and any other factors that might influence your perspective. How do you think that this viewpoint would affect the way in which you would approach a KM investigation? Would this be a problem?

Question 2

The purpose of this question is to demonstrate understanding of the appropriate use of KM tools for organisational needs.

It addresses the broad learning objective of:

Analyse a knowledge management problem and recommend appropriate tools and techniques for its solution

In Knowledge Sources and KM Tools, we discussed knowledge tools under 4 categories of processes:

creating and discovering
explicating and externalising
communicating and sharing
internalising and assimilating

In this question you are to describe how different KM tools and techniques could apply to the (hypothetical) organisation described in the case study below:

Tatra are the world's third oldest car company, which produced a number of rather advanced streamlined cars during the course of its production run. Because spare parts and manuals are hard to find for these cars, a group of amateur enthusiasts has formed the 'Tatra Owners Spares Club' to pool their resources. They have hired a shed to hold all the spare parts and charged a joiner's fee for new members to defray costs. Members can get photocopies of technical documents, or buy spare parts such as bearings and seals from the Club when they are needed. A serious problem they face is that the organisers of the Club are getting older, and want to take a less active role in running the Club, while the newer members (despite their enthusiasm) are not as knowledgeable about what model of what car needed what part. In addition, the mechanics who have worked on the cars are all retiring, so the Club organisers are very keen on making videos of them doing standard overhauls of the motors, gearbox, steering, brakes and suspension with a view to making the knowledge more widely available. They have a large number of photographs, and they also have schematics that have come from the manufacturer. All of this information is being kept on a spreadsheet, which is maintained by the founders of the Club in rotation on their different computers. They have often had a problem working out which one is the latest version, and this has caused problems with lost parts etc in the past.

The Tatra Owners Spares Club want to make an inventory system that ties together the car parts, the documentation and the videos (which are not yet made). They also want to make the entire resulting system searchable from the Internet, and link up with other groups who are interested in the Tatra marque around the world.

(a) Briefly summarise the main features of the 'Tatra Owners Spares Club' in terms of (for example) its structure, membership, business model, topics they are concerned with, technological infrastructure, legal obligations, external organisations, and the likely "organisational culture"

(b) Select four KM tools from the list below, and briefly describe how they might be used to help the organisation. Be as specific as you can, based on the case study description.

Question 3 - Metadata

The purpose of this question is for you to demonstrate understanding and competence in the application of metadata to different types of resources.

It addresses the broad learning objective of:

Analyse a knowledge management problem and recommend appropriate tools and techniques for its solution

The Dublin Core Metadata Set is intended to provide a 'core' set of metadata descriptors that can be applied to any resource. In this question you are to apply Dublin Core metadata to types of resources that could potentially be used by an organisation in its KM practice.

For simplicity we will use the 'legacy' set of Dublin Core elements:

Contributor Coverage

Creator Date

Description Format

Identifier Language

Publisher Relation

Rights Source

Subject Title

Type

Reference no: EM13874

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