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8 Types of Organizational Knowledge

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Organizational knowledge is the collective knowledge and abilities possessed by the people who belong to an organization. By definition, knowledge is a living type of information that is actively communicated and used by people. Organizational knowledge can be difficult to transfer and retain. As such, organizational knowledge is prone to waste and loss. The following are common types of organizational knowledge.


Practical knowledge related to completing tasks and activities in a particular industry or domain.

Tacit Knowledge

Abilities that are difficult to communicate or teach such as design sense.

Dispersed Knowledge

Knowledge that is dispersed across your organization such that different people hold the key to answering relevant questions. For example, the three people who together can answer the question "why did we build this system?"

Situated Knowledge

Highly local knowledge such as a technician who knows how to turn a particular valve that always gets stuck.

Organizational Culture

Knowledge specific to your organizational culture such as a manager who understands the motivations and tendencies of other managers who can use this knowledge to influence them.

Generalist Knowledge

Broad foundational knowledge such as an architect who communicates to dozens of specialists in different domains and speaks their language.

Expert Knowledge

Detailed knowledge about a particular domain such as a web designer who knows the details of several web standards and technologies.


Knowledge that has been captured and represented as information such as documentation, checklists and training materials.
Overview: Organizational Knowledge
The collective knowledge and abilities possessed by the people who belong to an organization.
Related Concepts

Knowledge Management

This is the complete list of articles we have written about knowledge management.
A Posteriori
A Priori
Anti Information
Artificial Knowledge
Body Of Knowledge
Corporate Memory
Dispersed Knowledge
Document Control
Document Quality
Domain Knowledge
Information Asymmetry
Information Management
Information Pollution
Knowledge Analysis
Knowledge Audit
Knowledge Discovery
Knowledge Loss
Knowledge Measurement
Knowledge Processes
Knowledge Quality
Knowledge Risk
Knowledge Transfer
Knowledge Value
Knowledge Velocity
Knowledge Waste
Knowledge Work
Known Unknowns
Master Copy
Meta Knowledge
Outside Context Problem
Propositional Knowledge
Situated Knowledge
Tacit Knowledge
Unknown Unknown
More ...
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Types Of Knowledge

The differences between types of knowledge.

Curse Of Knowledge

Why experts have trouble communicating.

Tacit Knowledge

Knowledge that escapes documentation.

Disinformation vs Anti-Information

Two types of broken knowledge.

Knowledge Work

A definition of knowledge work with examples.

Information vs Knowledge

The difference between information and knowledge.

Expert Generalist

A definition of expert generalist with an example.

Qualitative Data

A definition of qualitative data with examples.

Objective vs Subjective

The difference between objective and subjective.

Knowledge Value

A definition of knowledge value with examples.

Knowledge Management

An overview of knowledge management with examples.

Information Pollution

An overview of information pollution.

Knowledge Loss vs Waste

The difference between lost and wasted organizational knowledge.

Knowledge Velocity

An overview of knowledge velocity.


The common types of artifact.

Knowledge Measurement

A definition of knowledge measurement with examples.

Knowledge Discovery

The common types of knowledge discovery.

Corporate Memory

A definition of corporate memory with examples.

Document Quality

The common types of document quality.

Knowledge Examples

The definition of knowledge with examples.
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