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European Knowledge Management Forum

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Creating value from knowledge

In Lisbon in March 2000, Europe's leaders set forth the objective to become the world's "most competitive and dynamic knowledge-based economy". The European Knowledge Management Forum is making strides to meet this lofty challenge.

Digital Economy

Just as there is no universally accepted definition of knowledge, there is no common definition of Knowledge Management (KM). In simple terms, the goal of KM is to generate value from the intellectual assets of an organisation. It should be noted that Information Technology is an enabler of KM, but not a necessity. KM is driven primarily by the people in an organisation, not by fancy software. The KM FORUM project, funded in part by the Information Society Technologies Programme, targeted the advancement of KM in Europe with an eye to the Lisbon objective. The project concentrated the efforts of over 5000 KM experts from academia, industry and public administrations. While the project aims to put Europe at the forefront of KM research, KM FORUM also attracted significant participation from the US and other non-EU countries. A key component of the efforts to foster networking and exchange of ideas is the KnowledgeBoard web portal (http://www.knowledgeboard.com). The dynamic web portal has the capability to host online workshops in real time. Members and visitors can research the many different disciplines that comprise KM through discussion boards, monthly themes, publications and events. Real-world events have also been organised, bringing together the members of this community to interact on a face-to-face basis rather than just online. One of many valuable outcomes of the KnowledgeBoard has been the appreciation of the importance of the issue of intellectual property rights. It is heartening that copyright infractions have not been an issue throughout the project's lifetime. The KnowledgeBoard has achieved international recognition from elite organisations such as the Harvard Business School. Given this success, a business plan is being developed to ensure the existence of the KnowledgeBoard beyond the end of the project. The project participants are also looking to share and apply the experience of KM FORUM as a model for coordinating other fields of research.

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