1Innovation Processes, Innovation Capabilities and Knowledge Management

Knowledge management can be defined as a set of processes, principles and techniques leading to the creation, organization, distribution, use and exploitation of the enterprise’s knowledge [LOP 11, PAL 09]. The knowledge management processes frequently discussed in the specialized literature are the generation, the transfer and the use of knowledge. Coombs and Hull [COO 98] suggest adding the processes of identification, capture, modification, validation, contextualization and knowledge closure, in order to enrich the traditional vision of knowledge management, deeply rooted in the practices of information management. In a broader sense, knowledge management depends on organizational practices that consist of articulating knowledge processes with knowledge domains, performance fields, and formalized and operational action models [COO 98]. The aim is to offer the firm the means for efficiently exploiting its intangible assets, but equally to access information and knowledge useful for its development.

Despite significant theoretical advances, the influence of knowledge management on the innovation capability of the firm is still unevenly understood by managers. The latter are relatively ignorant of practices and operational techniques that enable the exploitation of tangible and, mostly, intangible resources in view of developing the firm’s potential for innovation. The effects of knowledge management on ...

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