- List of Figures
- List of Tables
- List of Contributors
- Texts and Times Mapping the Changing Study of Work and Organizations
- Labor Markets and Flexibility
- Organizations and the Intersection of Work and Family: A Comparative Perspective
- Gender, Race, and the Restructuring of Work: Organizational and Institutional Perspectives
- Skill Formation Systems
- Technology and the Transformation of Work
- Groups, Teams, and the Division of Labor: Interdisciplinary Perspectives on the Organization of Work
- Introduction: Unmanageable Capitalism?
- The Diffusion and Domestication of Managerial Innovations: The Spread of Scientific Management, Quality Circles, and TQM between the United States and Japan
- Managers, Markets, and Ideologies: Design and Devotion Revisited
- Human Resource Management
- Knowledge Management
- Industrial Relations and Work
- Labor Movements and Mobilization
- Resistance, Misbehavior, and Dissent
- Manual Workers: Conflict and Control
- Service Workers in Search of Decent Work
- What we know (And Mostly Don't Know) about Technical Work
- The Changing Nature of Professional Organizations
- Ports and Ladders: The Nature and Relevance of Internal Labor Markets in a Changing World
- Introduction: The Reorganised Economy
- Organizations and Organized Systems: From Direct Control to Flexibility
- Interfirm Relations as Networks
- Changes in the Organization of Public Services and their Effects on Employment Relations
- Understanding Multinational Corporations
- Corporate Restructuring
- Beyond Convergence and Divergence: Explaining Variations in Organizational Practices and Forms
Abstract and Keywords
The central argument of this article is that knowledge management is an attempt by corporations to come to terms with new competitive pressures within capitalism for perpetual innovation in products, services, and organization by leveraging the tacit knowledge of their employees. Understanding, codifying, and mobilizing employees' social competencies has emerged as a key driver of corporate human resource policies. Here lies one of the paradoxes of knowledge management. On the one hand, knowledge-intensive firms confront powerful competitive pressures to accelerate every phase of the product development process. Time constraints on innovation, on the other hand, also place enormous pressure on the creative space ceded to expert labor to experiment. None of these tensions are new. What is novel, however, is the intensity of management focus upon the nexus between knowledge, innovation, and competitiveness coupled with the awareness that Taylorist technologies of control necessarily compromise creativity.
Alan McKinlay is Professor of Management at the University of St Andrews, Scotland. He has written extensively on business and labor history as well as the contemporary workplace. His books include Strategy and the Human Resource: Ford and the Search for Competitive Advantage (with Ken Starkey, 1992).
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