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Characterizing knowledge management in the small business environment

Kuan Yew Wong (Doctoral Student at the School of Engineering, Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering, University of Birmingham, UK (kxw281@bham.ac.uk).)
Elaine Aspinwall (Senior Lecturer at the School of Engineering, Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering, University of Birmingham, UK (E.Aspinwall@bham.ac.uk).)

Journal of Knowledge Management

ISSN: 1367-3270

Article publication date: 1 June 2004

Abstract

Most of the literature on knowledge management (KM) and its application has, until recently, been centered on large organizations. Pertinent issues in small businesses have to a large extent been neglected. However, small businesses do not necessarily share the same characteristics and ideals as large ones. There are certain unique features of small businesses that need to be understood before KM is implemented in their environment. This paper aims to redress some of this imbalance in the literature by putting KM into the context of small businesses. It looks at their characteristics, their advantages and disadvantages, their strengths and weaknesses, and their key problems and issues, all associated with KM. Recognition of all these elements is crucial in order to provide a well‐suited KM approach for small businesses. The paper culminates with recommendations that will provide important insights to help them accomplish this.

Keywords

Citation

Yew Wong, K. and Aspinwall, E. (2004), "Characterizing knowledge management in the small business environment", Journal of Knowledge Management, Vol. 8 No. 3, pp. 44-61. https://doi.org/10.1108/13673270410541033

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited