Monday, July 18, 2011

Sustainability without KM is like Engineering without Math: KM supports green initiatives worldwide

Sustainability without Knowledge Management is like Engineering without Mathematics. Could it be more simple?

Drastically reducing its energy consumption is absolutely vital to any enterprise that expects to survive in a fuel-constrained future. And, doing that depends totally on capturing, organizing, making sense of, and applying a far vaster array of environmental and operational details than ever before.

Read the KMWorld article that inspired this essay.

THIS IS KM. If you're uncomfortable using that term, get the heck over it. Without acceptance of the term Knowledge Management, and a firm grasp of the principles that constitute it, your environmental initiatives will be more likely to fail. It would be like trying to do Engineering without accepting totally the discipline that is Mathematics.

Unfortunately, the "Green KM" discussion almost always starts by chasing away its most significant audience, the general business community. It does this by first addressing sustainability in the classic KM domains of imaging and document management.

In this sense, it’s just like the argument for Green IT, which always seems to start out self-referentially-- how it makes IT itself more sustainable-- before moving on to what IT can do to make everything else more sustainable.

In both cases, as in any conversation that opens with "me-me-me," the audience is lost before it even became an audience.

In the same issue, see also Following a Greener Path: Data centers, power distribution companies and construction firms all try to conserve energy.

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