Knowledge : not for profit

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Gilligan, Lorraine
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BA (Hons) in Business Information Management
Dublin Business School
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Many organisations are beginning to identify and formalise the significance of knowledge in the business environment. Evolutions, and indeed revolutions in technology and the information society have created engines for dramatic changes in business, the volume and quality of information available to decision makers is crucial for the management and sharing of knowledge, streamlining operations to produce better and more effective organisations. This thesis will examine the relationship between knowledge and the non-profit organisation, specifically those within the Youth and Community sector in Ireland. In researching this thesis it was important to research the topic of knowledge management thoroughly. Analysing this in combination with my experience working with Leargas, a non-profit organisation delivering grant aid and project support services to project promoters in the fields of Education, Youth and Community and Vocational Training will hopefully demonstrate knowledge in practice. This paper discusses various complexities of the youth and community sector in terms of the wide variety of organisations and the operational realities faced by them bearing in mind the context of changing demographics and social and technological changes. Examination of the elements, types, context and benefits of knowledge based on a literature review of leading academics and practitioners in the field helps to illustrate the intricate relationships of knowledge, people and technology and how each impacts on the other. We can then explore the tools and techniques available to organisations wishing to engage a strategy of knowledge management and we will also examine a case study, the results of a questionnaire and the key interpretations of the literature review. Finally, although it is accepted that there is no one size fits all approach to knowledge management, there are however some common sense approaches to getting started which have been analysed and included for reference.