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Journal article

The Concept of "Ba": BUILDING A FOUNDATION FOR KNOWLEDGE CREATION

Nonaka I, Konno N...(+2 more)

California Management Review, vol. 40, issue 3 (1998) pp. 40-54 Published by California Management Review

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Abstract

This article introduces the Japanese concept of "Ba" to organizational theory. Ba (equivalent to "place" in English) is a shared space for emerging relationships. It can be a physical, virtual, or mental space. Knowledge, in contrast to information, cannot be separated from the context -- it is embedded in ba. To support the process of knowledge creation, a foundation in ba is required. This article develops and explains four specific platforms and their relationships to knowledge creation. Each of the knowledge conversion modes is promoted by a specific ba. A self-transcending process of knowledge creation can be supported by providing ba on different organizational levels. This article presents case studies of three companies that employ ba on the team, division, and corporate level to enhance knowledge creation. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR] Copyright of California Management Review is the property of California Management Review and its content may not be copied or emailed to multiple sites or posted to a listserv without the copyright holder's express written permission. However, users may print, download, or email articles for individual use. This abstract may be abridged. No warranty is given about the accuracy of the copy. Users should refer to the original published version of the material for the full abstract. (Copyright applies to all Abstracts.)

Author-supplied keywords

  • BUSINESS enterprises
  • BUSINESS planning
  • CORPORATE culture
  • CREATIVE ability in business
  • INDUSTRIAL management -- Japan
  • INFORMATION science
  • INNOVATIONS in business
  • JAPAN
  • JAPANESE philosophy
  • KNOWLEDGE management -- Research
  • ORGANIZATIONAL behavior -- Research
  • STRATEGIC planning

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