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The Manager's Pocket Guide to Knowledge Management by Barbara Kivowitz, Kathleen Foley Curley

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Chapter 1Knowledge Management: Why Now?

“The effective management of knowledge is the key management challenge of the late twentieth and early twenty-first century,” observes Peter Drucker. Why is this so? After all, knowledge has always been important for business success. Medieval merchants and sea captains closely guarded navigational lore. Inventions and patents were vital to the growth of the American industrial economy in the nineteenth century. The promise of better information management has been driving the computer industry since the 1950s.

As vital as knowledge has been all along, powerful forces are converging in our time to move it ahead of land, capital, raw materials, and technology as the key to competitive advantage. These forces ...

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