Oxford University Press
June 1, 2000
When The Knowledge-Creating Company appeared, it was hailed as a landmark work in the field of knowledge management and sold nearly 40,000 copies. Now, Enabling Knowledge Creation ventures even further into this all-important territory, showing how firms can generate and nurture ideas by using the concepts introduced in the first book.
Weaving together lessons from such international leaders as Siemens, Unilever, Skandia, and Sony, along with their own first-hand consulting experiences, the authors introduce knowledge enabling – the overall set of organizational activities that promote knowledge creation – and demonstrate the power to transform an organization’s knowledge into value-creating actions. They describe the five key “knowledge enablers” and outline what it takes to instill a knowledge vision, manage conversations, mobilize knowledge activists, create the right context for knowledge creation, and globalize local knowledge.
The authors stress that knowledge creation must be more than the exclusive purview of one individual – or designated “knowledge” officer. Indeed, it demands new roles and responsibilities for everyone in the organization – from the elite in the executive suite to the front-line workers on the shop floor. Whether an activist, a caring expert, or a corporate epistemologist who focuses on the theory of knowledge itself, everyone in an organization has a vital role to play in making “care” an integral part of the everyday experience; in supporting, nurturing, and encouraging microcommunities of innovation and fun; and in creating a shared space where knowledge is created, exchanged, and used for sustained, competitive advantage.
This much-anticipated sequel puts practical tools into the hands of managers and executives who are struggling to unleash the power of knowledge in their organization.
Georg von Krogh has worked with his co-authors on researching the ways that successful firms have been able to utilize knowledge – especially tacit knowledge – in developing competitive products and services since 1995. He is a professor of management at the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland and director of the Institute of Management at this university. He is also an active consultant to several large European and North American firms.
Kazuo Ichijo has studied innovation in major global firms that have made knowledge creation an important part of their management philosophy. His expertise includes innovation at the level of product development, organization, and industry. He is an associate professor in the Faculty of Social Sciences and an associate professor of the Graduate School of International Corporate Strategy at Hitotsubashi University in Tokyo.
Ikujiro Nonaka is co-author of The Knowledge Creating Company (Oxford, 1995) which made the business world aware of the power of knowledge creation. He has been described as one of the six founding contributors to (or pioneers of) the emerging knowledge-based view of the firm – together with his co-author Georg von Krogh. He is a professor of the graduate School of International Corporate Strategy at Hitotsubashi University and the Xerox Distinguished Professor of Knowledge at the Hass School of Business, University of California at Berkeley.