Autopoietic Knowledge Systems in Project-Based Companies

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Palgrave Macmillan, Oct 14, 2010 - Business & Economics - 227 pages
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All companies draw on resources outside the business, and have to compete with other enterprises to attract these resources. Standard texts on management and organization argue that the best way to get ahead in business is by getting a firm grasp of this external environment, by 'representing' it internally. Kaj Koskinen claims that this is the wrong approach. He argues that business knowledge doesn't just represent the world outside the company but is a construction of the company and the people working in it. The success of a company depends less on how clearly it represents the external environment than on factors such as institutional memory, a culture of trust and appropriate organizational mechanisms for learning. In short, the most successful companies are those which are what the author calls autopoietic knowledge systems. In this book, he presents a novel scheme for understanding knowledge creation and learning in project-based enterprises. He shows how autopoietic knowledge systems can be built and the benefits they can bring. All scholars and students of knowledge management will benefit from the radical new approach to business organization presented in this book. It will also be of great interest to knowledge managers looking to understand how they can drive their businesses forward

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Contents

Project Business
6
Systemic View and Systems Thinking
13
Autopoiesis
34
Copyright

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About the author (2010)

DR KAJ U. KOSKINEN has worked for many years as a Project Manager in several international engineering companies, including Outokumpu and Honeywell. His main experience derives from process automation. Since 1997 he has been a Senior Lecturer (Docent) in Industrial Management and Engineering at Tampere University of Technology, Pori, Finland. Dr Koskinen's research interest is focused on knowledge and project management, and he has published several articles and together with Professor Emeritus Pekka Pihlanto the book Knowledge Management in Project-Based Companies: An Organic Perspective (Palgrave Macmillan 2008).

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