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Stuff or Love? How Metaphors Direct our Efforts to Manage Knowledge in Organisations

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Stuff or Love? How Metaphors Direct our Efforts to Manage Knowledge in Organisations

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Samenvatting

This position paper addresses the way knowledge is conceptualized in knowledge management literature and practice. Using the work of Lakoff and Johnson on metaphors it will show how people use metaphors to think and talk about knowledge. In KM literature at least 22 different metaphors for knowledge are used. Further research shows that these metaphors are primarily Western metaphors while in Eastern philosophy many other metaphors for knowledge are used. The choice of metaphors for knowledge has great influence about the way we think about knowledge management. They determine what we diagnose as KM problems in organizations and what we develop as KM solutions. To illustrate this, the paper presents the results of an exercise set up to determine the effect of metaphors on knowledge management approaches in which two challenging metaphors for knowledge were used: knowledge as water and knowledge as love.

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OrganisatieHogeschool Inholland
LectoraatIntellectual Capital
Gepubliceerd inKnowledge Management Research & Practice (2008) 6, 5–12
Datum2008-08-19
TypeArtikel
TaalEngels

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