Andre Saito’s wiki on Knowledge Management education at JAIST

This wiki used to be the place where Andre Saito from the Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology gatherd notes and references for his PhD research on Knowledge Management education. (see research proposal below) Unfortunately the wiki is no longer available but luckily most of it’s valuable content is archived by the WayBack Machine.

Research Proposal


The aim of this study is to propose the concept of ‘competence in knowledge management’, or KM competence, and then to investigate how this competence is developed, particularly in the context of graduate KM programs.
It is important to note that the focus is on individual competence, rather than organizational or collective competence. Thus, we are seeking to better understand the role of KM professionals and practitioners, instead of studying how an organization develops knowledge creation, transfer and application capabilities.

Research questions

Main research question:

  • How is KM competence developed at graduate KM education?

Subsidiary research questions:

  • What is KM?
  • What is KM competence and how does it develop?
  • How are graduate KM programs taught?


The concept of KM competence will be theoretically developed through the analysis and integration of three streams of literature: varied perspectives on the KM discipline, case studies of KM in practice, and accounts of KM roles and their characteristics. We will then seek validation of the concept in a survey of both academics and practitioners.
The development of KM competence will be studied through a series of case studies of selected graduate KM programs. Data will be collected via semi-structured interviews of programs’ coordinators and instructors, and through the analysis of available documents and other published material (e.g. reports, syllabi, web sites, brochures, etc.).

Expected outcomes

The following outcomes are expected as a result of this study:

  • a framework of KM competence that explains how specific understandings, abilities and other personal characteristics combine to yield competence in KM;
  • a knowledge-based model of KM competence development that explains the knowledge processes involved and how they interact.”

Research Projects

KM Competence in Graduate KM Education (2006-2007)

Description: The study sought to surface the assumptions on knowledge management (KM) competence implicit in curricula of master’s programs in KM around the world. Having attracted contributions from diverse disciplines, KM is a promising source of instruction for managers who want to be prepared for the mounting changes of the knowledge economy and society. However, as a young discipline, it suffers from considerable diversity and ill-defined boundaries.

Knowledge Management Competence: An Epistemological Approach (2006-2007)

Description: We suggest a framework of individual knowledge management (KM) competence to support the development of knowledge managers, here broadly defined as managers prepared to deal with challenges in the knowledge economy. KM competence is described as particular combinations of KM-related activities and the capabilities required to perform them, which in turn are strongly dependent on how knowledge is defined and understood. Based on an extensive review of diverse disciplinary contributions to KM, we propose four basic perspectives on knowledge and its management ? information-, human-, computing- and strategy-oriented ? and illustrate how they constrain the way KM competence can be defined. We also report the major findings of a survey of KM researchers and practitioners conducted to validate the framework, which include a missing strategy-oriented perspective, a refined characterization of perspectives, and insights onto the complex relationships between KM perspectives, activities and capabilities.

(cc) BY Andre Saito.

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