Knowledge Management COMS 380. What is knowledge?.
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Knowledge is neither data nor information, though it is related to both, and the differences between these terms are often a matter of degree. We start with those more familiar terms both because they are more familiar and because we can understand knowledge best with reference to them. Confusion about what data, information, and knowledge are -- how they differ, what those words mean -- has resulted in enormous expenditures on technology initiatives that rarely deliver what the firms spending the money needed or thought they were getting. Often firms don't understand what they need until they invest heavily in a system that fails to provide it.
Davenport, Thomas H. and Prusak, Laurence. (1997). Working Knowledge: How Organizations Manage What They Know . Boston: Harvard Business School Press
Knowledge is a fluid mix of framed experience, values, contextual information, and expert insight that provides a framework for evaluating and incorporating new experiences and information. It originates and is applied in the minds of knowers. In organizations, it often becomes embedded not only in documents or repositories but also in organizational routines, processes, practices, and norms.
The Knowledge Management era (1990s)