In their argument, Pemsel and Wiewiora attribute the inability of project-based organizations in coordinating processes and resources across projects to the nature of the projects. The inference is that projects are highly independent. The independence of projects makes them a hindrance to coordination along project lines. Project based organizations face a challenge in the integration of learning and knowledge sharing according to Pemsel and Wiewiora. Best practices are also denied the opportunity to spread due to inadequate structures responsible for coordination in project-based organizations. The concept of reassigning individuals to other projects once a project is complete also contributes to the gap in knowledge sharing and integration of knowledge management in project management, as observed by Pemsel and Wiewiora. The reassigned individuals do not get the time to collectively share their thoughts and sum up the experiences learned for mutual benefit. Subsequently, team members leave a project at different levels of education or experience that further intensifies the existing gap.
In their article, Lindner and Wald explore various learning theories that contribute to knowledge management. Lindner and Wald quote Koskinen (2004) who concluded that language, mutual trust and proximity are vital factors in the promotion of knowledge management. These factors combined contribute to the distribution of knowledge within an organization. As observed earlier by Pemsel and Wiewiora, projects are temporary organizations. The implications from Koskinens work are that within the undertaking of a project, for knowledge to be shared effectively, there has to be a common language, mutual trust and proximity. A common language enables understanding of the knowledge shared between parties in the project. Mutual trust creates a culture of free sharing of knowledge. Lack of mutual trust promotes exclusivity of knowledge that leads to reduced efficiency in project management. Proximity enables faster and effective coordination of knowledge sharing in project implementation.
Hwang and Jian Ng in their article Project management knowledge and skills for green construction: Overcoming challenges assert that for the success of a project, a project manager has to be competent in their role. Hwang and Jian Ng cite Ahadzie (2007) whose research backs the claims that a projects success is reliant on the competencies of the project manager. The skills and competencies of the manager are directly related to their ability to guide the project to successful completion. Subsequently, this concept introduces a need for knowledge among project managers. The knowledge accumulated by the project manager should be distributed to all components of the project to avoid cases of reinventing the wheel. The spread of knowledge within the components of the projects calls for the integration of knowledge within project management. Hwang and Jian examine the importance of knowledge integration and attribute successful projects to the competency of the manager. The manager is responsible for integration of knowledge into the project for higher efficiency.
Hwang and Jian Ng also cite Kasvi et al. (2003) who introduced the concept of a project memory system. The project memory system introduced by Kasvi et al. was not only geared at handling coded knowledge like databases but also contexts and (social) processes behind these documents. The project memory system promoted by Kasvi et al. is essential in integration of knowledge in project management. Different procedures are used by the project memory system promoted by Kasvi et al. for instance; personal dialogue and workshops are cited as ways of building a database of project memory.
Boh (2007) as cited by Hwang and Jian developed four knowledge-sharing mechanisms that he attributed to being influential in distributing knowledge in temporary organizations. According to Boh, the factors that determine the distribution of knowledge in a project are the nature of the problem (which he categorized as either standard or unique) and the size and geographical position of the project. The factors Boh identified affect distribution of information in various ways. To begin with, the standard problems have a defined way of response in most organizations. There is limited need for complex distribution of knowledge. For unique problems, depending on their complexity, there may be need for wide sharing of knowledge. For small problems, there is little distribution of information as opposed to large problems. For problems that occur in geographically widespread locations, there may be a need for wide sharing of knowledge.
Gardner, Gino and Staats in their article DYNAMICALLY INTEGRATING KNOWLEDGE IN TEAMS: TRANSFORMING RESOURCES INTO PERFORMANCE assert that in knowledge based environments, the teams involved must developed systematic approaches to the integration of knowledge resources in the implementation of projects. The view by Gardner, Gino and Staats is not far from the same opinion held by Lindner and Wald. Integration of knowledge in projects is essential for their smooth and efficient running. Sufficient knowledge sharing in the project creates an enabling operational environment. A project with knowledge integrated into it has been attributed with higher success rates than those without integration of knowledge.
Gardner, Gino and Staats are of the opinion that the global trend that has increased rapidly changing and intensive competition has driven organizations to lean towards team-based approaches in solving problems and attaining solutions to suit their needs. As Gardner, Gino and Staats observe, organizations depending on their context are increasingly developing teams to carry out projects and disbanding the teams once the projects are completed. The teams are expected to operate in a knowledge intensive environment before they break up. Gardner, Gino and Staats observe there is a noteworthy gap in the present literature to discourse the knowledge management practices in many maturity levels of project management.
Similar to Pemsel and Wiewiora , Gardner, Gino and Staats are of the opinion that naturally, the current program management maturity models not only lacks criteria to evaluate the maturity of project management from knowledge management perception, but also fails to address knowledge management practices for different maturity level of project management. From Gardner, Gino and Staats perspective, researchers trust that emerging a suitable background to discuss knowledge management practices and processes at dissimilar levels of project management will considerably add to the growth of project management maturity models from knowledge management perception. The framework should endorse various criteria to examine both degrees of maturity and shows the basics to expand the timeline from knowledge management standpoint.
The four papers have discussed various ways for integ...
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