Knowing and not knowing in work practice: three ethnographic studies
Knowledge is a primary resource for organizations' capabilities. Individuals in organizations know how to get their jobs done. This dissertation seeks to understand this "knowing" in the actual organizational settings. Particularly, it inquires into knowing in action, or how people know how to get their work done in each moment in each specific situation; as opposed to abstract ideas, opinions, or theories of such knowing. Another point of emphasis is on what people do not know. Understanding knowing in action entails how "not knowing" is encountered. Ethnographic fieldwork was conducted to inquire into knowing and not knowing in action in natural settings. Particularly, audio and video recordings were analyzed in detail.
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The Problem of Not Knowing
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accounting manager actual analysis assimilation Bank System Bechky breakdown Carlile colleague communication records community of practice competent concept context CRM system crucial customer's David Firth denial DeSanctis difficult discussion Donald Schon ethnographic existing work practices experience familiarity pockets focus functions individuals information system initial instance interactionally interactions interviews journal titles junior accountant knew knowing in action knowledge boundary knowledge sharing learning Lotus Notes monitoring Nick observed opportunistic encounters organization organizational Orlikowski package participants Participatory Design particular peer support structures Pentland person perspective practitioners problem radio reps requirements development revealed Rick Rick sent seek knowledge service call service request simply situated learning situation slips social solve specialist specific Spencer suggest tacit knowledge talk technicians Terry things transformation typically UCLA unfolding user representative users and designers utterance various vendor Wenger work-around workers workgroup