To read this content please select one of the options below:

Storing and sharing knowledge: Supporting the management of knowledge made explicit in transnational organisations

Elayne Coakes (University of Westminster, London, UK)

The Learning Organization

ISSN: 0969-6474

Article publication date: 1 November 2006




The purpose of this paper is to indicate and illustrate the potential for use of different types of technologies to support knowledge process in transnational organisations.


The paper uses a standard literature review plus illustrations from case organisations to demonstrate the potential applications and value of technology for knowledge sharing.


Transnational organisations have specific issues relating to space and time, and increasingly virtuality, in their working practices. Technology can assist to alleviate these issues and can provide the organisations with ways to share and distribute knowledge throughout their processes, sites and workforces. Successful knowledge management however, continues to need a sociotechnical approach where the social aspects of knowledge creation, storage and sharing need to be considered alongside the technical. Sociotechnical theory tells us we must importantly consider people, task, process, and environment (both internal and external) when considering how best to implement technology into our organisations.

Research limitations/implications

Case studies that specifically describe the work of transnationals are not common and thus the organisations used as illustrations may be atypical, however we believe this limitation is alleviated by using both a for‐profit and a not‐for‐profit organisation to illustrate the variety of purposes to which technology can be put in transnational organisations.


This paper has major practical implications. It is now common in the knowledge management literature to lower the value of technology for knowledge sharing and to emphasise the human aspects of knowledge sharing. This paper agrees with this perspective but illustrates how technology can be used successfully to assist in the knowledge sharing processes across time, space and virtuality.



Coakes, E. (2006), "Storing and sharing knowledge: Supporting the management of knowledge made explicit in transnational organisations", The Learning Organization, Vol. 13 No. 6, pp. 579-593.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2006, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Related articles