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

Knowledge management framework to the university libraries

Roberta Moraes de Bem (Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (UFSC), Florianópolis, Brazil)
Christianne Coelho de Souza Reinisch Coelho (Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (UFSC), Florianópolis, Brazil)
Gertrudes Aparecida Dandolini (Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (UFSC), Florianópolis, Brazil)

Library Management

ISSN: 0143-5124

Article publication date: 13 June 2016




The purpose of this paper is to propose a knowledge management framework for university libraries (named GC@BU). The framework consists of three modules: knowledge management coordination; knowledge resources; and learning commons, and uses as theoretical assumptions the design of an university library (developed for the context of the framework), the standards for libraries in higher education of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) and the characterization of the university library as a complex adaptive system (CAS).


This framework was structured by a literature review and based on models, methodologies and existing frameworks, being afterwards evaluated through focus groups composed of managers of university libraries, resulting in an enhanced version.


After evaluation, the GC@BU framework showed to be easy to apply in the context for which it was created (university libraries). It is noteworthy that in addition to the knowledge management application, the GC@BU reinforces the importance of concerning for the quality and the services, since it uses as a parameter the standards of the ACRL. In addition, the perspective used to characterizing university libraries (as CASs) was well accepted by the tool evaluators.

Research limitations/implications

The proposed framework is focussed on university libraries, but its use in other contexts should not be dismissed as long as the manager makes the necessary adjustments for this purpose.

Practical implications

Since knowledge management is an intangible element, its application and benefits are not easy to conceive. This tool provides the implementation of knowledge management in university libraries, and knowledge is considered from different approaches (from the user, the collaborator, the library collection). Besides, the tool is arranged so (in modules and verification criteria) as to allow the manager to administer the library as a whole, from the point of view of knowledge management.


This study is considered innovative and applicable on the global stage of university libraries, because despite being evaluated by Brazilian managers it uses international standards and has a strong ability to adapt to different contexts.



de Bem, R.M., Coelho, C.C.d.S.R. and Dandolini, G.A. (2016), "Knowledge management framework to the university libraries", Library Management, Vol. 37 No. 4/5, pp. 221-236.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2016, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Related articles