I3 UPDATE / Entovation International News

a free monthly briefing on the knowledge agenda

No. 61 May 2002





David J. Skyrme


David Skyrme Associates


Contents - Previous Feature - Main Feature - Knowledge Digest


The Globel Knowledge Primer
An Announcement from ENTOVATION

Debra M. Amidon

All you want to know about architecting Global Knowledge Strategy.

This comprehensive Global Knowledge Primer - with hundreds of pages of articles - provides you with a window into the evolution of the knowledge movement, a variety of facets of knowledge practice and a glimpse of the core trends and future vision of the Knowledge Economy. The reader can follow how the knowledge focus has provided a common language across functional responsibilities, in different industries and from all corners of the globe.

Roots and Evolution

For our purpose, the knowledge movement has been in true motion since 1987 with a roundtable sponsored by Digital Equipment Corporation. It began as an innovation agenda - harnessing the 'intellectual capital' of a nation for international competitiveness. Peter Drucker may have written about the 'knowledge worker' and the 'knowledge society' years before; but there was little understanding of how fundamental was to be this transformation or insight as to how such a major shift in the economy would be led.

In the mid-1980's, Karl-Erik Sveiby provided the European roots by writing 'The Know-How Company' and Hiroyuki Itami (a student of Ikujiru Nonaka) did the same with 'Invisible Assets' in Japan. At that time, few had an understanding of how universal would be the modern managerial concepts to take us well beyond Taylorism and the Alfred P. Sloan divisionalization practices suitable for General Motors in the 1940's. Today - almost 15 years later, the knowledge community spans all countries - in both developing and industrialized nations. This is a movement born out of practice, not theory. In fact, the new concepts and methodologies are being developed ‘real-time’ as solutions to today's complex management dilemmas. We now know that there is no such thing as a non-knowledge industry. In the early days, many wrote about the differences between knowledge-intensive industries inferring that the services sector was knowledge intensive and the high-tech or manufacturing firms were not. Then, there were writings that the knowledge economy represented the high-technology industries; and non-technology firms were not. Managerially, they are identical - although what does differentiate them is the nature of their business, the maturity of a given industry and how they utilize their knowledge base, however that may be defined.

We also know that leadership can - and must - come from everywhere in the enterprise. We have observed the evolution of the Finance community embracing the notions of intangible assets. The Human Resource community is leveraging the concepts of leadership, learning and networked organization structures. The IT community realized that the focus is not on information at all, but the knowledge that is created shared and applied in an organization - the innovation process! R&D long considered the idea engine for most companies has discovered that good ideas do not necessarily reside within R&D or even inside the corporation. Research shows that the majority of new product ideas actually come from external sources of knowledge. What is needed are suitable management technologies to evaluate and incubate those ideas into viable products and services.

WHY do you need a holistic view of the knowledge strategy?

This explicit focus on knowledge as a management strategy is only about 15 years old. And yet, there is hardly an organization - profit or not for profit - that has not embraced the modern knowledge concepts. Many see it as a path for profitability. Others see it as a path for economic vitality and sustainability for industrialized and developing nations alike. This compendium of articles provides a foundation for viewing this knowledge phenomenon from the perspective of all 3 economic levels simultaneously. You'll read of the practice of executives and the policies of leaders.

WHAT are the elements of knowledge strategy?

The material is organized in eight parts - each containing a glimpse into activity and aspirations. The material includes some of the most recent and timely work of those affiliated with the ENTOVATION Network. Some of the references provide pointers to material that might be harder to find. We have also included some of the original (now historic) documents - never before available online.

Part 1 - Overview
Part 2 - The ENTOVATION Network
Part 3 - The Knowledge Value Proposition
Part 4 - Knowledge and Innovation Trends
Part 5 - Focus on Functions
Part 6 - Focus on Enterprises
Part 7 - Focus on the World
Part 8 - Focus on ENTOVATION

HOW do you move from Concept to Implementation?
There are three essentials for knowledge leadership:

  • 1
  • Understanding the underlying roots and research base;
  • 2
  • Exposure to examples of best practice and case stories; and
  • 3
  • Envisioning future action.

With the compendium Architectural Primer, managers will discover how to lead their enterprises in the Knowledge Economy. Become a participant in the Community of Knowledge Practice and let us know your progress!

The Primer - the equivalent of more than 400 written pages of text - can be found by clicking on Global Knowledge Primer from the ENTOVATION Home page (http://www.entovation.com) or going direct to:

Email: Debra M. Amidon

© Copyright, 2002. David Skyrme Associates Limited and Authors - All rights reserved.

I3 UPDATE / ENTOVATION International News is a joint publication of David Skyrme Associates Limited and ENTOVATION International Limited - providers of trends analysis, strategic advice and workshops on knowledge management and knowledge innovation®

® Knowledge Innovation is a registered trademark of ENTOVATION International.



Global Knowledge Primer from Entovation


Customers: a new twist on knowledge management

Dot com winners and losers

Virtual teaming and virtual organizations: 25 principles of proven practice

Measurement myopia; those who measure and those who act

Portal power: gateways or trapdoors?

Creativity is not innovation

Virtual trust

China: accepting the knowledge challenge

Innovation action for Europe