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2016/2017  KAN-CIBCO1009U  Knowledge Work Within and Between Organizations

English Title
Knowledge Work Within and Between Organizations

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Mandatory
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Semester
Start time of the course Spring
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Study board
Study Board for MA in International Business Communication
Course coordinator
  • Lisbet Pals Svendsen - Department of Management, Society and Communication (MSC)
  • Matthias Trier - Department of IT Management (ITM)
Main academic disciplines
  • Intercultural studies
  • Communication
  • Language
Last updated on 04-08-2016
Learning objectives
To achieve the grade 12, students should meet the following learning objectives with no or only minor mistakes or errors:
  •  Apply theories to critically assess corporate approaches to knowledge work and sharing in an organization
  •  Identify and approach common problems pertaining to tacit knowledge in an organizational knowledge exchange practice
  •  Examine the role of the influence of different cultures in an organization for knowledge management practices
  •  Identify and analyse sociological phenomena, e.g. communities of practice and networks of computer-mediated communication
  •  Construe plausible and theoretically well-founded explanations in concrete analyses of empirical cases
Knowledge Work Within and Between Organizations:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Individual exam
Size of written product Max. 5 pages
Assignment type Written assignment
Duration Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
Grading scale 7-step scale
Examiner(s) One internal examiner
Exam period Summer
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
Description of the exam procedure

Addressing a set theme, which will include a case description, a research question, and a recommendation, together with a theory-based account of the background for the recommendation

Course content and structure

The purpose of the course is to provide theoretical and empirical insight into various cultural, organizational, and communicative barriers to knowledge sharing within and between organizations, and to develop a contextualized understanding of the type of practical boundary spanning skills that is involved in expert communication.



the course will consist of lectures and seminars on broad themes like:

  • The knowledge-intensive organization in historical perspective
  • Current conceptualizations of knowledge work
  • The relation between knowledge and (sub)culture(s)
  • Specialization and systematic miscommunication within and between organizations
  • Institutional ecology and boundary objects
  • The role of boundary spanners/knowledge brokers
  • Understanding knowledge as a practice
  • The network lens on organizational communication and knowledge work in collectives
Teaching methods
The course will consist of seminars, lectures and input from student work groups, facilitated by an interactive platform. Students will present one group assignment in class.
Student workload
lectures and workshops 18 hours
preparation 36 hours
seminars 12 hours
preparation 24 hours
assignments and feedback 90 hours
exam incl preparation 30 hours
Expected literature

Alvesson, M. and Kärreman, D. (2001) Odd couple: Making sense of the curious concept of knowledge management. Journal of Management Studies, 38(7), p995-1018.

Carlile, P.R. (2004) Transferring, Translating, and Transforming: An integrative framework for managing knowledge across boundaries, Organization Science, 15(5), pp. 555-568

De Long, D.W. & Fahey, L. (2000) Diagnosing cultural barriers to knowledge management. Academy of Management Executive, 14(4)

 Lyon, A., & Chesebro, J.L. (2011). The politics of knowledge: A critical perspective on organizational knowledge. In Canary, H.E., & McPhee, R.D. (Eds.), Communication and Organizational Knowledge: Contemporary Issues for Theory and Practice (pp. 69-86). London/New York: Routledge.

Tsoukas, H. (2011). How should we understand tacit knowledge? A phenomenological view. In Easterby-Smith, M., & Lyles, M.A. (Eds.), Handbook of Organizational Learning and Knowledge Management (2nd edition) (pp. 453-476). Chichester: Wiley.

Zorn, T.E., & Taylor, J.R. (2004). Knowledge management and/as organizational communication. In Tourish, D., & Hargie, O. (Eds.), Key Issues in Organizational Communication (pp. 96-112). London/New York: Routledge.


Last updated on 04-08-2016