Purpose – What is the role of managing knowledge within organizations? This is one of the fundamental research and practical questions which has animated and moved forward the rich scientific debate around the management of knowledge resources. This article aims to introduce the focus of the special issue. Its fundamental premise is that organizations invest their scarce resources only if these investments are capable of enhancing the business value creation capacity. Thus managers are interested in managing knowledge not for the sake of knowledge management, but because the planning, design, assessment and revision of the organizational knowledge resources and processes can support the business performance improvements.
Design/methodology/approach – The selection of the articles collected in this special issue is largely based on the work of the conference “International Forum on Knowledge Assets Dynamics – IFKAD” which took place in June 2011 in Tampere, Finland. IFKAD gathers leading experts in the field of the strategic knowledge-based development of micro and macro organizations paying great attention to the knowledge dynamics affecting organizational value creation capacity.
Findings – Knowledge represents one of the fundamental constituent parts of any organization and it can be incorporated into people's abilities or ingrained into structural and technological capital. Thus management of knowledge is at the core of organization's business growth. In the light of this reflection this special issue pays attention to two main perspectives. First, recognizing that knowledge, likewise any other organization's resource, needs management means to support its allocation and development, the frameworks and tools aiming to identify, manage and assess the critical knowledge resources for growth are focused on. Second, acknowledging that the translation of knowledge into business outcomes requires management mechanisms, and then considering the knowledge processes grounding the improvement of performance.
Originality/value – The special issue explores the phenomena integrating the organizational, group and individual perspectives. This integration overcomes some limitations about the understanding of the issues under investigation.