Ikujiro Nonaka

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Ikujiro Nonaka (野中 郁次郎, born May 10, 1935) is a Japanese organizational theorist and Professor Emeritus at the Graduate School of International Corporate Strategy of the Hitotsubashi University, best known for his study of knowledge management.


The Knowledge-creating Company, 1995[edit]

Ikujirō Nonaka, ‎Hirotaka Takeuchi (1995). The Knowledge-creating Company: How Japanese Companies Create the Dynamics of Innovation.

  • As for the epistemological dimension, we draw on Michael Polanyi's (1966) distinction between tacit knowledge and explicit knowledge. Tacit knowledge is personal, context-specific, and therefore hard to formalize and communicate. Explicit or "codified" knowledge, on the other hand, refers to knowledge that is transmittable in formal, systematic language.
    • p. 95
  • Any organization that deals with a changing environment ought not only to process information efficiently, but also create information and knowledge.
    • Nonaka, I. (1994) “A dynamic theory of organizational knowledge creation”, Organization Science, Vol.5, No.1, February, p. 14. Quoted in: Bratianu (2010).

"The Practical Wisdom of Ikujiro Nonaka," 2008[edit]

Ikujiro Nonaka in: Sally Helgesen. "The Practical Wisdom of Ikujiro Nonaka," strategy+business, Nov. 25, 2008.

  • In the act of creating, people argue. They have heated dialogue. They get upset! Without real exchange, you can’t create knowledge. Knowledge creation is a human activity
  • Companies and leaders who treat knowledge management as just another branch of IT don’t understand how human beings learn and create... Unlike land, capital, energy, labor, and technology — the conventional “inputs” into business practice — knowledge is innately self-renewing. “It is produced and consumed simultaneously. Its value increases with use, rather than being depleted as with industrial goods or commodities. Above all, it is a resource created by humans acting in relationship with one another.
  • Why is ultimately a question of purpose: Why do we exist? In most organizations, people are not encouraged to keep asking questions.

Quotes about Nonaka Ikujiro[edit]

  • Ikujiro Nonaka and his co-workers created a consistent body of theory concerning knowledge creation in organizations based on four main ideas:
a) knowledge creation at individual level is a direct result of the continuous dialogue between tacit and explicit knowledge;
b) there are four basic knowledge conversion processes: socialization, externalization, combination and internalization;
c) knowledge creation at the organizational level is based on these four conversion processes and a spiral driving force;
d) there is a shared space Ba for knowledge creation...
The novelty of these ideas, and the correlation between them and Japanese companies success on the global market made of Nonaka one of the most prominent thinkers in knowledge management, and his model of knowledge creation became a new paradigm for organizational knowledge dynamics.
  • Bratianu, Constantin. "A critical analysis of the Nonaka’s model of knowledge dynamics." Proceedings of the 2nd European Conference on Intellectual Capital. Academic Publishing Limited, Reading, 2010.

External links[edit]

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