In response to Ahmad comments regarding KM, I quote:
The distinction between Knowledge Management (KM) and Information Management (IM) is far from being well-articulated in the KM literature and this is compounded by the confusion around the concepts of knowledge and information. In fact, there is no consensus regarding the claim that KM is a new field with its own research base, since much of the terminology and techniques used, such as knowledge mapping, seem to have been borrowed from both IM and librarianship (Koenig, 1997). KM is considered by some as the business salvation and by others as the “emperor’s new clothes” (Martensson, 2000). On the one hand, authors such as Gourlay (2000) and Beckman (1999) present KM as an emerging discipline. According to Beckman, the expression was coined for the first time in 1986 by Dr. Karl Wiig who wrote one of the first books on the topic, Knowledge Management Foundations, published in 1993. On the other hand, others, such as Broadbent (1998), Streatfield and Wilson (1999), claim that firms and information professionals have been practicing for years KM-related activities. Streatfield and Wilson (1999) argue that the concept of knowledge is over-simplified in the KM literature, and they seriously question the attempt to manage what people have in their minds. Nevertheless, there is a real interest and enthusiasm in KM as revealed by the increasing number of publications relating to the topic since 1995 (Mahdjoubi & Harmon, 2001). In addition, the library and information press has suggested for a number of years that it is a burgeoning field of great interest to information professionals, since they possess the necessary skills to work in the field (Broadbent, 1997; Abram, 1997; Chase, 1998; Henczel, 2001; Oxbrow & Abell, 2002).
Although many KM initiatives are documented in the business literature (Davenport & Prusak, 1998), what is actually entailed in these initiatives remains vague and ambiguous because there are many interpretations of knowledge management. And, a recent review by Hlupic et al. (2002) identified 18 different definitions of KM. Many attempts have been made to define KM from a theoretical perspective (Choo, 1998; Srikantaiah & Koenig, 1999, Oluic-Vukovic, 2001, Mac Morrow, 2001) and to identify the various types of organizational knowledge (Nonaka & Takeuchi 1995, Boisot 1998, Brown & Duguid 1998). These attempts do not really address the relationships between KM and IM.
Recently, this lack of a clear distinction between information and knowledge has been recognized as a major issue with the KM literature (Martensson, 2000; Tsoukas & Vladimirou, 2000; Kakabadse et al., 2001). Gourlay (2000) suggests that KM practices focus mainly on knowledge representations not on knowledge per se, making the distinction between KM and IM even more blurred. There is indeed a fine line between KM and IM at both the conceptual and practical levels. … Much of the case-studies published in the literature are associated with large consulting firms, who were pioneers in that area, lending credence to the belief that KM simply a marketing ploy for consultants.
Im not here to say that KM dose not exest or that IM is better, I dont have the knowledge to say that. But from my point of view i think that even the advanced interprises and countries still dont hold a firm grip on the concept and still there is a depate about the two concepts, KM & IM. I find it clear that we must first understand and implement IM before we can reach an understanding of KM. As it is mentioned in the article above, there is a thin line between the two.
Bouthillier, F. and Shearer, K. (2002). “Understanding knowledge management and information management: the need for an empirical perspective” Information Research, 8(1), paper no. 141 [Available at http://InformationR.net/ir/8-1/paper141.html%5D