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An exploratory study on knowledge management in Portugal

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1 Author(s)
Sousa, M.J. ; CIEO - Res. Centre for Spatial & Organizational Dynamics, Algarve Univ., Portugal

This paper is based on a research held between 2010 and 20111 with the goal to analyze the implementation of Knowledge Management (KM) in Portugal. The research intents to characterize the organizations and the knowledge strategy implemented; it also intends to identify technologies, practices and processes used and to acknowledge benefits and difficulties of knowledge management systems implementation. Other purpose of the research was to identify the job title for those responsible for knowledge management activities. The main findings indicate that job titles are very diverse and in most case don't explicitly refer the expression knowledge management. According to knowledge management technologies, the most commonly used by the organizations are corporate intranets or portals. The study results show that the existence of a knowledge management strategy or a business strategy including a knowledge management dimension in organizations is critical. In that cases the resistance of employees to carry out knowledge management activities is lower. However, only a third part of organizations refers the knowledge management dimension in their business strategy and even fewer organizations have a knowledge management strategy. The main difficulty faced by organizations when it comes to implementing knowledge strategy is the lack of experience and expertise in the area of KM. On the other hand, the main benefit identified was to be able to explore more efficiently the existing knowledge within the organization. Moreover, the study concludes that KM efforts assume different levels in organizations implanted in Portugal. Large organizations seem to have high levels of formalization and implementation of KM activities. However, most organizations still presents very incipient initiatives and results show that the implementation of knowledge activities is mainly a result of informal and isolated initiatives developed by few employees in organizations.

Published in:

Information Systems and Technologies (CISTI), 2012 7th Iberian Conference on

Date of Conference:

20-23 June 2012