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1Lambe, P.: Organising knowledge : taxonomies, knowledge and organisational effectiveness.
Oxford : Chandos, 2007. xix, 277 S.
ISBN 1-84334-227-8 (pb) * ; 1-84334-228-6 (hb)
(Chandos knowledge management series)
Abstract: Summary Taxonomies are often thought to play a niche role within content-oriented knowledge management projects. They are thought to be 'nice to have' but not essential. In this groundbreaking book, Patrick Lambe shows how they play an integral role in helping organizations coordinate and communicate effectively. Through a series of case studies, he demonstrates the range of ways in which taxonomies can help organizations to leverage and articulate their knowledge. A step-by-step guide in the book to running a taxonomy project is full of practical advice for knowledge managers and business owners alike. Key Features Written in a clear, accessible style, demystifying the jargon surrounding taxonomies Case studies give real world examples of taxonomies in use Step-by-step guides take the reader through the key stages in a taxonomy project Decision-making frameworks and example questionnaires Clear description of how taxonomies relate to technology applications The Author Patrick Lambe is a widely respected knowledge management consultant based in Singapore. His Master's degree from University College London is in Information Studies and Librarianship, and he has worked as a professional librarian, as a trainer and instructional designer, and as a business manager in operational and strategic roles. He has been active in the field of knowledge management and e-learning since 1998, and in 2002 founded his own consulting and research firm, Straits Knowledge, with a partner. He is former President of the Information and Knowledge Society, and is Adjunct Professor at Hong Kong Polytechnic University. Patrick speaks and writes internationally on knowledge management. Readership This book is written primarily for knowledge managers and key stakeholders in knowledge management projects. However, it is also useful to all information professionals who wish to understand the role of taxonomies in a corporate setting. It may be used as a teaching text for postgraduate students in Information Studies, Library Science, and Knowledge Management, as well as at MBA level. Contents Part One: Dealing with Babel - the problem of coordination; why taxonomies are important; definitions; taxonomy as a common language; taxonomies express what is important; socially constructed; the business case for taxonomies; taxonomies in KM, collaboration, expertise management and information management; taxonomies, typologies and sensemaking Part Two: Fixing the foundations: planning your taxonomy project - understanding your context; identifying and engaging stakeholders; defining your purpose; planning your approach; communicating and setting expectations; managing myths; how NOT to do a taxonomy project; a taxonomy as a standard; digital information, hierarchies and facets Part Three: Building the floors: implementing your taxonomy project - Implicit taxonomies; evidence gathering; analysis or sensemaking; validation principles and techniques; change management and learning; taxonomy sustainability and governance; taxonomies and technology; measuring success Part Four: Looking skywards: the future of taxonomies - complexity and sensemaking; taxonomies as sensemaking frameworks and patterns; taxonomies and serendipity; taxonomies and ambiguity; anti-taxonomy and folksonomies; taxonomies, ignorance and power; taxonomies and organisational renewal
Anmerkung: Rez. in: KO 34(2007) no.4, S.266-267 (E. Quintarelli): "The knowledge and information world we live in can rarely be described from a single coherent and predictable point of view. In the global economy and mass society, an explosion of knowledge sources, different paradigms and information-seeking behaviors, fruition contexts and access devices are overloading our existence with an incredible amount of signals and stimulations, all competing for our limited attention. Taxonomies are often cited as tools to cope with, organize and make sense of this complex and ambiguous environment. Leveraging an extensive review of literature from a variety of disciplines, as well as a wide range of relevant real-life case studies, Organising Knowledge by Patrick Lambe has the great merit of liberating taxonomies from their recurring obscure and limitative definition, making them living, evolving and working tools to manage knowledge within organizations. Primarily written for knowledge and information managers, this book can help a much larger audience of practitioners and students who wish to design, develop and maintain taxonomies for large-scale coordination and organizational effectiveness both within and across societies. Patrick Lambe opens ours eyes to the fact that, far from being just a synonym for pure hierarchical trees to improve navigation, find-ability and information retrieval, taxonomies take multiple forms (from lists, to trees, facets and system maps) and play different roles, ranging from basic information organization to more subtle tasks, such as establishing common ground, overcoming boundaries, discovering new opportunities and helping in sense-making. ; Over the course of the book, a number of misconceptions haunting taxonomy work are addressed and carefully dispelled. 'taxonomy development is often thought to be an abstract task of analyzing and classifying entities, performed in complete isolation. On the contrary, taxonomies are to a large extent products of users' perceptions and worldviews, strongly influenced by the pre-existing information infrastructure. They can also be dangerous tools having the potential to reveal and clarify but also to exclude and conceal critical details that can have a large impact on basic business activities such as managing risk, controlling costs, understanding customers and supporting innovation. If the first part of the hook introduces concepts, provides definitions and challenges wrong assumptions about taxonomies and the work of taxonomy-building, the second one takes us step-by-step through a typical project. From here on, insights become part of practicable frameworks that form the basis of a concrete information-management strategy and process so flexible so as to be used in very different organizational environments and scenarios. Starting from the definition of stakeholders, purpose and scope and ending with deployment, validation and governance, a taxonomy-building project is realistically presented as an iterative and fascinating journey over competing needs, changing goals, mixed cues and technical and cognitive constraints. Beyond introducing fundamental guiding principles and addressing relevant implementation challenges, Organising Knowledge provides a large dose of political and pragmatic advice to make your efforts useful in contributing to the overall knowledge and information infrastructure. Taxonomies, much like architect's blueprints, only represent theory until they are implemented in practice involving real people and real content. As Lambe explains, this step requires crossing over to the other side of the barricade, wearing the user's shoes and constructing an information neighborhood, designing and populating a metadata framework, solving usability issues and successfully dealing with records management and information architecture concerns. ; While each single paragraph of the book is packed with valuable advice and real-life experience, I consider the last chapter to be the most intriguing and ground-breaking one. It's only here that taxonomists meet folksonomists and ontologists in a fundamental attempt to write a new page on the relative position between old and emerging classification techniques. In a well-balanced and sober analysis that foregoes excessive enthusiasm in favor of more appropriate considerations about content scale, domain maturity, precision and cost, knowledge infrastructure tools are all arrayed from inexpensive and expressive folksonomies on one side, to the smart, formal, machine-readable but expensive world of ontologies on the other. In light of so many different tools, information infrastructure clearly appears more as a complex dynamic ecosystem than a static overly designed environment. Such a variety of tasks, perspectives, work activities and paradigms calls for a resilient, adaptive and flexible knowledge environment with a minimum of standardization and uniformity. The right mix of tools and approaches can only be determined case by case, by carefully considering the particular objectives and requirements of the organization while aiming to maximize its overall performance and effectiveness. Starting from the history of taxonomy-building and ending with the emerging trends in Web technologies, artificial intelligence and social computing, Organising Knowledge is thus both a guiding tool and inspirational reading, not only about taxonomies, but also about effectiveness, collaboration and finding middle ground: exactly the right principles to make your intranet, portal or document management tool a rich, evolving and long-lasting ecosystem."
Compass: Knowledge management
LCSH: Knowledge management
BK: 06.70 Katalogisierung
DDC: 658.4038 / dc22
LCC: HD30.2.L36 2007
2Maceviciütè, E. u. T.D. Wilson (Hrsg.): Introducing information management : an information research reader.
London : Facet Publ., 2005. xv, 235 S.
Abstract: Information management (IM) has exploded in importance in recent years and yet until now there has been no Reader to introduce students to the subject. This comprehensive international collection introduces you to the core topics and methodologies used in teaching IM, namely: information behaviour; environmental scanning and decision making; knowledge management; and information strategy. These peer-reviewed papers represent an elite selection from the respected "Information Research" journal, each carefully updated to take into account recent developments. This book is an essential introduction to IM for all students on courses in library and information science, IM, information systems, business information technology, business management, computer science and information technology; as well as for practitioners working in a wide range of organizations providing information services.
Anmerkung: Rez. in: JASIST 58(2007) no.4, S.607-608 (A.D. Petrou): "One small example of a tension in the book's chapters can be expressed as: What exactly falls under information management (IM) as a domain of study? Is it content and research about a traditional life cycle of information, or is it the latter and also any other important issue in information research, such as culture, virtual reality, and online behavior, and communities of practice? In chapter 13, T.D. Wilson states, "Information management is the management of the life cycle to the point of delivery to the information user" (p. 164), yet as he also recognizes, other aspects of information are now included as IM's study matter. On p. 163 of the same chapter, Wilson offers Figure 12.2, titled "The extended life cycle of information." The life cycle in this case includes the following information stages: acquisition, organization, storage, retrieval, access and lending, and dissemination. All of these six stages Wilson labels, inside the circle, as IM. The rest of the extended information life cycle is information use, which includes use, sharing, and application. Chapter 3's author, Gunilla Widen-Wulff, quoting Davenport (1994), states "effective IM is about helping people make effective use of the information, rather than the machines" (p. 31). Widen-Wulff, however, addresses IM from an information culture perspective. To review the book's critical content, IM definitions and research methodology and methods reported in chapters are critically summarized next. This will provide basic information for anyone interested in using the book as an information research reader. ; The chapter by Wilson and Maceviciûtè should have been the first in the book, as it offers an informative, clearly laid out, research-based picture for IM. The chapter offers IM definitions, as mentioned earlier, and also covers a couple of major studies concerned with mapping diversity of content and topics studied in the IM field. RefViz, a visualization tool and an addition to EndNote, was used to map 462 articles published between 1999 and 2004 that had the term information management in their title. Figure 2.1 (Visualization of the IM literature), presents the map's 18 groups or clusters of documents. Two studies by Wilson also are presented. A study completed in 2004 covered the years 2000 to 2004 and reviewed five journals with articles about information activities. The 2004 study analyzed 190 articles from 383 authors. Wilson developed a number of categories about information activities as part of the 2000 and 2004 studies that indicate the scope of the articles analyzed and IM's diversity of subject matter. The remainder of the chapter presents comparative data between the 2000 and 2004 research studies. Joyce Kirk provides a hierarchy of five IM definitions. "IM as IT systems" and "information resource management" are two of these definitions. While it is difficult to clearly recognize any of the hierarchy statements as a definition for IM, what can be had from this hierarchy is the realization, as cviu te' and Wilson state in chapter 2, that IM "is used as an abbreviation for the management of IT, information systems management, management information systems, etc." (p. 20). Perhaps, the critical usefulness of the chapter resides not so much in that it offers any ready to apply definitions for IM but rather in that it provides an overall review about information. The latter can be helpful for a book intended as an information research reader and as an introduction to IM. WidenWulff examined 15 Finnish insurance businesses and developed scales for the measurement of open and closed organizations, and also presented learning organization attributes in different information environments. A 1999 study by Aiki Tibar about critical success factors (CSF) and information needs of successful Estonian companies is the centerpiece of the chapter. The study's findings are presented in relation to previous and more recent research on CSF. The study's methodology was qualitative in nature, involving semistructured interviews with managers and engineers from 25 of the most successful companies in Estonia; these companies were selected in a contest in 1998 as being included in the top 50 most successful companies. In terms of findings, IM was a CFS that was mentioned the most frequently. ; Chun Wei Choo focused on environmental analyzability and organizational intrusiveness in an effort to theorize and to highlight intricacies in scanning as managers attempt to deal with uncertainty and complexity in their environment. Correia and Wilson used a case-study approach to examine managerial scanning in 19 companies; 47 semistructured interviews were performed in an effort to develop a grounded theory of scanning. Because of the grounded theory approach, the authors did not use statistical sampling but rather utilized principles of maximum variation sampling and theoretical sampling. Categories and relationships that emerged from the grounded theory approach were utilized to build a model of the environmental process. Judith Broady-Preston presents an interesting discussion on balanced scorecard as a way to keep track of successful strategies and their impact on various areas of organizational performance, including finances, innovation and learning, and customer perceptions. Yet, although there have been three efforts to clarify the purpose of a balanced scorecard, the concept remains unclear, along with a role that information professionals can play in its successful application in organizations. France Bouthillier and Kathleen Shearer set review case studies of five private and five public organizations to bring out elements, practices, and benefits associated with knowledge management (KM). As stated by the authors: "generally speaking, IM involves the integration of a variety of activities designed to manage information and information resources throughout their life cycle" (p. 150). The authors say that the focus of KM initiatives, as opposed to the focus in IM initiatives, tends to be on "knowledge-sharing methodologies such as communities of practice, virtual collaboration and expert databases" (p. 150). In the chapter "The Nonsense of Knowledge Management" revisited by Wilson, he states that communities of practice are at the heart of methodologies for KM. And natural arenas for KM and communities of practice are various disciplines in education and departments in the medical field because of the collaborative spirit in these two fields. But, he also repeats his criticisms that beyond these arenas, there is no such thing as KM in business where competition is the norm rather than collaboration. He emphasizes that a common problem in the KM community is the treatment of knowledge as a thing or a commodity, when in reality, knowledge is a complex and dynamic process. The chapter also provides additional evidence from analysis of various publications that show KM as a fragmented field and as a business fad, according to Wilson. ; Allen strikes a realistic note of the institutional importance of trust across teams of academics and administrators, and subsequently of the political behavior of academics and computer services administrators/ managers and the relation of the latter to information strategy formulation. Research was conducted at 12 university sites, information strategy process documents were analyzed, and 20 informants were interviewed at each site. The study's research focused on cross-case analysis (instead of an iterative approach to collection and analysis of data), research was longitudinal, and a grounded theory approach was employed. According to the author, findings confirm a similar position taken by Pettigrew (1977): "development of information strategy is the outcome of negotiated political relations" (p. 177). And for such negotiated political relations, the author concludes, trust is a necessary ingredient. It is important to reiterate that IM's scope requires a diversity of study methods and methodologies to address all issues involved. A multiplicity of information and IM definitions and the number of local and global issues that must be addressed, along with information's significance as resource and/or commodity in different types of organizations, necessitate diversity in information research. Each chapter has demonstrated a need to cover many aspects of IM and to ensure that there is as much clarity in that effort as possible, and yet differentiation of IM from other related fields such as KM clearly remains a top issue. As with any other effort to define a field's boundaries, the task at hand is not easy, but while definitions and boundaries are being worked out, there is always an opportunity to engage in fruitful discussions about scope and critical issues in information research."
LCSH: Knowledge management ; Information retrieval
RSWK: Informationsmanagement / Aufsatzsammlung ; Wissensmanagement / Aufsatzsammlung
BK: 06.35 Informationsmanagement
DDC: 658.4038 / dc22
LCC: HD30.2.I5595 2005