Asee peer logo

Communication In Communities Of Practice: Knowledge Management Pressure Point

Download Paper |


2002 Annual Conference


Montreal, Canada

Publication Date

June 16, 2002

Start Date

June 16, 2002

End Date

June 19, 2002



Conference Session

Strategic Issues in EM Education

Page Count


Page Numbers

7.307.1 - 7.307.6



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors

author page

Taggart Smith

Download Paper |

NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Main Menu Session 3242

Communication in Communities of Practice: Knowledge Management Pressure Point

Taggart Smith, Ed. D. Organizational Leadership & Supervision, School of Technology Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN


Knowledge management has moved from being considered a possible fad to a considerable lever of business strategy. Thus, it is appropriately positioned in this session, Strategic Issues. As practices and procedures become better delineated, more leaders in management education are incorporating this in strategy discussions. Peter Drucker in his book Post-Capitalist Society describes the journey from a capitalistic society to a knowledge society by saying, “knowledge is the only meaningful resource.” (p. 42) The function of management is to apply existing knowledge and to define what new knowledge is needed and how it can be used. “That knowledge has become the resource, rather than a resource, is what makes our society ‘post-capitalist.’ ” (p. 45) 1

The study of knowledge management becomes increasingly important in engineering and technology as several forces converge: · marketing to global customers · competing with new providers of goods/services · growing computer networks and increasing use of information technology · restructuring hierarchical organizations into nearly flat or horizontal ones · downsizing, rightsizing, reengineering business processes · changing demographics of the workforce. The effect of these forces has been heightened, according to David Skyrme, by “the growing recognition that knowledge and others forms of ‘intellectual capital’ are the hidden assets in a company. They . . . underpin value creation and future earnings potential.” (p. 62) 2 Although he cautions about the hype surrounding software, especially, he states: It is human knowledge that develops new products, comes up with creative marketing campaigns, discerns customers wants and develops special relationships with suppliers and business partners. If you delve beneath the fad, you will find good examples of organizational learning, business transformation, better innovation processes, accounting for intangible assets, information management and knowledge-based computer systems. All are different roots of today’s knowledge management. What a focus on knowledge offers is a unifying perspective that helps people from different branches of knowledge management connect, explore their common roots and develop a common language for sharing their experiences. (p. 63)

Proceedings of the 2002 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2002, American Society for Engineering Education

Main Menu

Smith, T. (2002, June), Communication In Communities Of Practice: Knowledge Management Pressure Point Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--10497

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2002 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015