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Title: Towards a framework of knowledge management in the Chinese public sector : a case study of China customs
Author: Cong, Xioming
ISNI:       0000 0004 2705 6813
Awarding Body: Northumbria University
Current Institution: Northumbria University
Date of Award: 2008
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There is intensive research in knowledge management study for the private sector in Western countries. However, less research has been done for the public sector, and none has been done in the Chinese public sector. The motivation is that knowledge management issues in the public sector are much neglected in the Chinese public sector. Moreover, compared with knowledge management in the private sector, knowledge management in the public sector has received much less attention. This thesis investigates issues and difficulties and important factors in the process and the implementation of knowledge management for Chinese public organizations and to help them have a better understanding of the process of the knowledge management by developing a framework that is applicable to the Chinese public sector. To address issues and difficulties in the Chinese public sector, this study explored how knowledge management can be applied to the Chinese public organization context. This involves complicated social processes such as social relationships both in and outside the organization. This research takes a social constructionist paradigm, trying to understand and interpret the Chinese public managers' unique experiences, perceived values and embedded Chinese culture that can have great impact on the application of knowledge management to the Chinese public organization. In line with this philosophical stance, Forty three Customs officers in China Customs, mainly at middle or lower level of management, were involved in qualitative interview, with data analyzed through content analysis. The research findings indicate that China Customs has been engaging knowledge management activities all the time although there is no explicit mentioning of the term `knowledge management' and staff has insufficient perception and awareness of the concept of knowledge management. Its management style is strongly influenced by Chinese political system and the Chinese traditions. Therefore, to effectively manage knowledge, it is necessary to change the mindset of leaders and gain their support financially and morally in fostering a learning and knowledge sharing culture, developing a knowledge management strategy, training and rewarding people, and building an infrastructure for information technology. The study is an in-depth analysis of one large government organization's practice of knowledge management, which has not been studied before. Contributively, this study offers understanding of applying knowledge management to the Chinese public context. By drawing upon experience of Chinese public managers, it extends knowledge management theories and offers a contribution to practice grounded in the Chinese context. Significantly, this thesis develops a framework , consisting five activities of knowledge process and six identified important factors through literature review and interviews, by integrating factors into the whole knowledge management process, providing practical guidance for the Chinese public managers to inform how knowledge will be managed in the Chinese public sector.
Supervisor: Li Hua, Richard Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: N100 Business studies ; N200 Management studies