Beyond critique of current maturity models, the research literature has neglected to supply empirical evidence of the value Knowledge Management (KM) holds for organizations. Specifically, not much is known regarding KM in developing economies. The majority of studies, in common with other emergent business philosophies, are for the most part focused on large organizations of developed economies, where readily available implementation resources are an underlying assumption. This paper will address this issue and assess the correlation between KM Maturity as a measure of successful institutionalization of KM and Organizational Performance (OP) in a developing economy. From a large urban South African University engaged in numerous collaboration programs with industry, the authors have gained insight into KM Maturity and Organizational Performance (OP) of three industry groups, over a five-year period. Findings supported the hypothesis that companies reporting higher OP also recorded higher KM Maturity and vice versa. In comparison to peer organizations within their respective industries, findings indicate that there are conditions were companies that achieved higher OP scores recorded lower KM Maturity scores and vice versa. Apart from speculating which industry factors skewed performance figures, statistical analysis could not clarify why the correlation between growth in KM Maturity and growth in OP is not easily noticeable and/or non-existent. Due to the South African scenario being considered a benchmark for developing economies characterized by continued change, diversity and even elements of silent intolerance and conflict, this study may therefore be viewed as a “pilot study” to provide a baseline and insight into future research of KM for enabling OP.
Kruger, Neels and Johnson, Roy D., "Determining the Value of Knowledge Management: A South African Perspective" (2009). GlobDev 2009. 3.