Introduction to Library and Information Science/Annotation of McInerney, Claire. "Knowledge Management and the Dynamic Nature of Knowledge"

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McInerney, Claire. "Knowledge Management and the Dynamic Nature of Knowledge." Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology 53 (2002): 1009:1018.

Knowledge Management (KM), once the sole domain of the corporate world, is now necessary to many information disciplines. Information professionals need an understanding of what makes KM effective. This understanding begins with knowledge as an ever-changing entity, made up of human experiences, emotions, and senses. Scholars have identified knowledge to include the tacit (internal) and the explicit (manifestations of the internal). Organizations have developed KM systems to facilitate both tacit and explicit knowledge, and the sharing of the two, through discussion, training, team-building, etc. The author contends that (despite critics’ assessment that KM is incapable of a process so subjective and human) examples abound from the corporate world where KM has maximized profitability, innovation, etc. Based on these examples, the author stresses principles to guide effective KM. These include an environment dedicated to valuing individual experience and open communication as a means to share and learn; using technology to accommodate knowledge (emphasizing currency, accessibility, etc.); and an understanding that KM requires a rooting in both the tacit and explicit forms of knowledge. The fluidity of knowledge is well-developed. However, how this evolving knowledge affects KM is illustrated by examples solely from the realm of corporate organizations. If KM is increasing in scope beyond the traditional organizations, there is a surprising lack of even anecdotal evidence in new, information-based environments. The implications given for information professionals are a rehashing of the models that have served corporations. It is unclear how KM, armed with a sense of the dynamic and human nature of knowledge, will look different in an information-based environment. This article would be better served if it distinguished how effective KM would look, feel, and operate under the expanding information professions versus the traditional corporate model.