The Knowledge-Creating Company

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September 1995



Two leading Japanese business experts, Ikujiro Nonaka and Hirotaka Takeuchi, are the first to tie the performance of Japanese companies to their ability to create new knowledge and use it to produce successful products and technologies. In The Knowledge-Creating Company, Nonaka and Takeuchi provide an inside look at how Japanese companies go about creating this new knowledge organizationally. The authors point out that there are two types of knowledge: explicit knowledge, contained in manuals and procedures, and tacit knowledge, learned only by experience, and communicated only indirectly, through metaphor and analogy. U.S. managers focus on explicit knowledge; the Japanese, on the other hand, focus on tacit knowledge. And this, the authors argue, is the key to their success - the Japanese have learned how to convert tacit into explicit knowledge. To explain how this is done - and illuminate Japanese business practices as they do so - the authors range from Greek philosophy to Zen Buddhism, from classical economists to modern management gurus, illustrating the theory of organizational knowledge creation with case studies drawn from such firms as Honda, Canon, Matsushita, NEC, Nissan, 3M, GE, and even the U.S. Marines. In addition, the authors show that, to create knowledge, the best management style is neither top-down nor bottom-up, but rather what they call "middle-up-down", in which the middle managers form a bridge between the ideals of top management and the chaotic realities of the frontline. As we make the turn into the twenty-first century, a new society is emerging. Peter Drucker calls it the "knowledge society", one that is drastically different from the "industrial society",and one in which acquiring and applying knowledge will become key competitive factors. Nonaka and Takeuchi go a step further, arguing that creating knowledge will become the key to sustaining a competitive advantage in the future. Because the competitive environment and cus


Ikujiro Nonaka and Hirotaka Takeuchi are both Professors of Management at the Institute of Business Research, Hitosubashi University.


"A fascinating, exciting exposure to a new way of thinking about the knowledge-based company....Provides a model of knowledge creation that will be a touchstone of future work in this field....This important, imaginative book will challenge and intrigue managers and management scholars alike."--D. Eleanor Westney, MIT Sloan School of Management in the Sloan Management Review
"A fascinating volume that will interest philosophers, managers, and more common readers....The analyses are so thorough that they make the one- and two-page descriptions in Forbes magazine seem like elementary fairy stories. The authors have done their research well and provide delightful details."--Minneapolis Star Tribune
"Knowledge creation is to the 90s what excellence was to the 80s. I can't imagine a better book on organizational design for innovation. Nor can I imagine a better common focus for managers and scholars. This is the best and most original blend of organizational theory and pract
EAN: 9780195092691
ISBN: 0195092694
Untertitel: How Japanese Companies Create the Dynamics of Innovation. Sprache: Englisch.
Verlag: Oxford University Press
Erscheinungsdatum: September 1995
Seitenanzahl: 298 Seiten
Format: gebunden
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