Re: What to call knowledge management? #knowledge-transfer #knowledge-flow #name

Douglas Weidner


Welcome to the Knowledge Age!


The world has passed thru a number of fundamental episodic changes that have greatly affected human occupations—from hunter-gatherers, to the Agrarian, Industrial and more recent Info Ages. We are now entering the challenging Knowledge Age, where robots, drones and artificial intelligence will replace many existing occupations.


Knowledge Management (KM) is a transformational discipline. It optimizes evidence-based, human and organizational performance in the K Age as a ‘Learning Organization’. Learning Organizations are enabled by KM Systems (IT), but driven by substantially improved human aptitudes (skills and competencies) and especially by transformation of K Worker attitudes (personal purpose and passion).  K Workers have unique K-Age activities, which include trusted interpersonal collaborations, K sharing, and especially creativity.


We must act now to develop personal knowledge managers, the future workforce, who will have much increased engagement, personal performance and job satisfaction. The cumulative result will be substantially-improved, organizational performance, health and sustainment in the K Age.

At the KM Institute, we know that KM is much more than just increasing K flow. Besides, such definitional battles have been fought and settled in the past. In the early 2000s, many thought to call it K Sharing.

You can argue whether we are in the K Age/Economy/Society/Era, but the concept of KM, dating to mid-1990s, has been long settled. Further, you can argue that KM is about 'People, Process and Technology' which is true, but if it is the K Age, it is much more about K and that is about people, not technology which has become quite ubiquitous and commoditized.There are over 10,000 Certified K Managers (CKM) and many more KMers with a KM job title with $Billions spent by KM providers, from consultants to technologies.

Also, it might be helpful for you to at least read the ISO 30401:2018 Knowledge management systems - Requirements, but please don't confuse the word systems to think it means an IT system.

On Sat, Feb 27, 2021 at 9:12 AM John Muz <fatherjohnmuzam@...> wrote:


Hi KM Practitioners,

I am new in the KM world and this is my first post on this forum. Before posting, I searched for previous posts on this but could not any,


While reading "Mastering Organizational Knowledge Flow: How to Make Knowledge Sharing Work" - Frank Leistner . I was wondering what you think about the idea of Frank Leistner  calling a ‘stop’ to the word “Knowledge Management” (KM) to “Knowledge Flow Management (KFM)”. And, if his idea is totally accepted in the KM community then, why do we still have persistence use of KM instead of KFM.


Using the term 'Knowledge Management' instead of 'Knowledge Flow Management', he notes:


“it creates a wrong sense of understanding and people will use unsuitable approaches to solve issues connected with it’   ...First, there is a problem with those two words in combination…”

“After a long time of playing with alternative terms, the one that actually fits best with my understanding is knowledge flow management, because the thing that you can manage is the flow of knowledge. You can speed it up by providing tools and technology as a foundation.”


‘Along those same lines, it is not possible to “transfer knowledge,” at least not in the direct sense of transferring an entity from one person to another. What actually happens is that person A shares some information, which is then used by person B and combined with prior (tacit) knowledge and experiences to create new knowledge.’


Thanks in advance for your input.



John Muzam,

PhD – Candidate

Wroclaw- Poland

Join to automatically receive all group messages.