Edition: 1, 2003
Knowledge management and its various aspects are becoming increasingly popular in the field of organization and management, both in the academy and in business. Organizations employ so-called "Knowledge Management Managers", software vendors sell knowledge management systems, knowledge is seen as a primary strategic business resource, and we are living, claim some writers, in a knowledge society. Within the social sciences, research into various aspects of knowledge is becoming established as a field of study.
The authors argue that in order for knowledge to be strategic, a range of obstacles needs to be dealt with by the organization's members and managers. Knowledge is not automatically linked to strategy or performance, but is instead dependent upon partially embedded contextual factors related to individual motivation, politics, norms and values, and cognitive capacities, primarily because the practice of knowledge sharing is bound to be multilateral.
Knowledge Sharing in Organizations examines two different knowledge sharing programmes at two large multinational corporations, representing the paper packaging and pharmaceutical sectors. The scope of the knowledge-sharing concept is made evident through the rather distinct individual natures of the two case companies SCA Packaging and AstraZeneca. Despite the differences, however, the authors argue that the concept of knowledge sharing is applicable to both types of operations and presents a theoretically and empirically grounded framework for knowledge sharing in organizations.