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Title: Do we practise what we preach? Are knowledge management systems in practice truly reflective of knowledge management systems in theory?
Authors: Wickramasinghe, Nilmini
Keywords: Knowledge Management
Knowledge Management Systems
Knowledge Workers
Organizational Memory Systems
Competitive Advantage
Chair of Health Informatics Management, Epworth HealthCare, Victoria, Australia
Issue Date: Jun-2003
Publisher: MCB UP Ltd
Citation: Business Process Management Journal, June 2003; 9(3): 295-316
Abstract: Knowledge management systems are predominant in both theory and practice. However, are the same systems discussed in theory actualized in practice? By comparing and contrasting knowledge management systems in theory and practice, this paper demonstrates that they are indeed dissimilar. In theory, they have both subjective and objective components. In practice, only the objective component appears to be actualized; hence, these systems in practice are essentially organizational memory systems at best and not knowledge management systems at all. By unravelling the mystique of knowledge management systems, this paper exposes a fundamental anomaly. Further, an apparent void currently in practice is highlighted; namely, the lack of the subjective component of knowledge management systems in practice. They are being heralded as key systems that are vital for organizations to survive and thrive in the intense competitive environment of the information age. Surely then, a system that in practice supports not only the objective component, but also the subjective component of knowledge management, would indeed be a truly powerful system.
DOI: 10.1108/14637150310477902
ISSN: 1463-7154
Journal Title: Business Process Management Journal
Type: Journal Article
Affiliated Organisations: James J. Nance College of Business Administration, Cleveland State University, Cleveland, Ohio, USA
Appears in Collections:Health Informatics

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