BACKGROUND OF STUDY
Shared knowledge and performance have been relevant in four epochs namely the era of early influences, the era of the industrial revolution, the era of scientific management movement and the modern era. Many records and ideas relating to management date from antiquity. Among these are the records of the Egyptians, the early Greeks, and the ancient Romans. In addition, there have been the experience and administrative practices of the Catholic Church, military organizations, and the cameralists of the sixteenth to the eighteenth centuries. Interpretation of early Egyptian papyri, extending as far back as 1300 B.C., indicate the recognition of the importance of organization (Koontz, O’donnel and Weirich, 2000:34).
The Industrial Revolution in Europe was the transitory phase from the manufacturing or putting-out system to the factory system. The present thesis will attempt to show that management was relevant during the three epochs of the Industrial Revolution in Europe, United States of America and Japan and so it was more of a Management Revolution than an Industrial Revolution (Berliner, 2003:5). Although Frederick Taylor, who did his work in the early years of the twentieth century, is usually called the father of scientific management, many persons before Taylor considerable contributions to the development of management thought (Koontz, O’donnel and Weirich, 2000:34).
Knowledge management is a relatively new discipline and therefore has a short history. As a conscious discipline, it developed from the various published work of academics and pioneers such as Peter Drucker in the 1970s, Karl-Erik Sveiby in the late 1980s, and Nonaka and Takeuchi in the 1990s. It began when the concept of a “knowledge company” was introduced in published literature (Uriarte, 2008:32-38)