Proposes that multinational companies (MNCs) establish virtual communities of practice, i.e. intranet‐based collaborative forums, and thereby benefit from a combination of codification and personification strategies in order to solve knowledge retrieval problems for the knowledge worker.
Based on an overview of the problems related to retrieval (i.e. individual decoding and interpretation of knowledge), a literature review on individual memory, databases, social capital and virtual communities of practice reveals a knowledge retrieval means matrix, paying respect to retrieval processes.
Virtual communities of practice are suggested as a strategy for internationally‐operating corporations that cannot develop regular face‐to‐face contact between employees, but still need some degree of personification for efficient knowledge transfers.
Being a conceptual paper, quantitative/qualitative integration will enrich the debate further. Also, the very narrow focus on firms' information systems excludes important aspects such as knowledge creation, transfer stickiness, and application of retrieved knowledge.
The knowledge retrieval means matrix is a useful instrument for managers to map and further develop their organizations for better utilization of the organizational memory.
The combined tripartition of virtual communities, the combination of codification and personalization, and knowledge retrieval is, to the best of the authors' knowledge, presented for the first time.
Gammelgaard, J. and Ritter, T. (2005), "The knowledge retrieval matrix: codification and personification as separate strategies", Journal of Knowledge Management, Vol. 9 No. 4, pp. 133-143. https://doi.org/10.1108/13673270510610387Download as .RIS
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