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What if knowledge management actually is a technology problem?

Posted to Gurteen Knowledge-Log by David Gurteen on 11 July 2002



What if knowledge management actually is a technology problem?
WeblogGurteen Knowledge Log
Posted DateThursday 11 July 2002 09:33 GDT
Posted ByDavid Gurteen
Linkshttp://www.kellogg.nwu.edu/faculty/mcgee/htm/blog/2002/07/09 ... 
CategoriesInformation Technology; Knowledge Management; Personal Knowledge Management
PeopleJim McGee 

I just came across a posting by Jim McGee in McGee's Musings that I found thought provoking. Here is how it starts :
What if knowledge management actually is a technology problem?

Current thinking holds that knowledge management's problems come from too much focus on technology when the key problems are about organizational processes and practices. I've said as much myself on many occasions. But this formulation risks perpetuating the myth that problems are either organizational or technological. We know the real world isn't that simple, of course. We shouldn't contribute to the confusion by oversimplifying our discussion.

Like Jim, I have always thought that KM is about people - "psychology - not technology" but I always love it when so called 'truths' that we hold dear are questioned - including my own. We've only got to look back through history to see the many times when we thought we were right and had all the answers - only to see those views totally overturned a few years later.

So what if KM is really all about technology and not people? I don't think so! Like Jim, I agree the real world is not that simple. We tend to like either-or arguments - right-or-wrong solutions - but reality is not like that - the answer is usually fuzzy and some where in between the extremes. So should KM be more about technology than people? Maybe its just that our current technology is poor or we are not using it appropriately. What role will technology play in the future?

Take a look at what Jim has to say - some interesting thoughts ... What do you think?

If you are interested in Knowledge Management, the Knowledge Café or the role of conversation in organizational life then you my be interested in this online book I am writing on Conversational Leadership
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