6.1 Introduction

6.1 Introduction

          In previous chapter we have discussed about knowledge processes. These knowledge processes provide a strong foundation for knowledge management. It is important to note that these processes are inter-dependent and all of them are affected by countless factors. Due to these reasons different KM frameworks/models are presented in a wide variety of ways.  Some models are sequential and seek to provide a better overview at the expense of "realism". Other models display overlapping processes in an attempt to simulate what actually occurs inside an organization. The problem with the latter is that they are often hard to grasp and can only convey limited information so as not to become incomprehensible. Since KM is closely related to other disciplines (such as strategic management, information management, project management, etc.) and it is enabled by a wide range of processes and systems, the proposed models/frameworks in literature depict such complexities. 

          Although KM literature has presented no agreed upon guidelines or standards, there are essentially six questions that a KM framework must try to address:

  1. "What”: refers to the actual processes of knowledge management
  2. “When”: refer to time which is very important in today’s competitive world. It also refers to the timing for using one method or another, and is very closely related to "why"
  3. “How”: refer to organizational processes, methods, etc.
  4. "Why": refers to an indication of the reasons behind using one method or the other
  5. "Who": refers to agents responsible of performing KM activities
  6. “Where”: refer to the part of the organization where KM activities will take place.

          The latter four questions are usually tackled by strategic oriented models that take a broader perspective. Whereas, what/how is addressed by process oriented models that mainly focus on management tools and are generally more common.

          In the following sections we have briefly discussed various models/frameworks appeared in literature. These models are just representative but certainly not an exhaustive collection.