Knowledge principles

This set of knowledge principles has been designed by Knowledge and Information Management (KIM) practitioners in government to assist their colleagues in developing strategies and plans to improve how knowledge is shared in their departments.

Knowledge is not information, although information management principles may be applied to captured knowledge. Knowledge capture, however, must not be seen as synonymous with, or a substitute for, a holistic knowledge management programme. Knowledge is the sum of experience, training, insight and education and is tacit, whereas information is tangible, captured, manipulated in information systems and subject to further interpretation.

The approach taken to developing these principles is consistent with the approach taken to developing the information principles and both form a companion set.

Click on each of the seven principles to view the related resources, or on the full PDF below for a broader illustration of the principles as a whole.

Knowledge principles (0.18MB)

The principles provide a framework for considering the knowledge sharing issues that need to be addressed in order for the Civil Service to be a world-leading knowledge organisation.

Knowledge is an asset which is fundamental to the efficient and effective delivery of public services.

In order for knowledge to thrive it requires appropriate behaviours and cultures, fostered and adopted by leaders and individuals alike.

Capturing of knowledge turns that which is held tacitly in the heads of members of staff into explicit, recorded knowledge.

Knowledge is an asset that develops from the intellectual activity of individuals – which can be brought together to form Organisational Knowledge.

The value of knowledge can be multiplied by re-use.

Knowledge is the cornerstone of learning, both classroom and workplace based.

Organisational learning in this context is the ability of the organisation to benefit from the collective knowledge of its individuals.