Page content

Over the next two days, Ulster University is hosting a major European conference that is bringing together leading academics and industry professionals from over 42 countries to exchange ideas and best practices in knowledge management.

The 17th European Conference on Knowledge Management is devoted to critical debate on knowledge management, which is the process of creating, capturing and storing knowledge to achieve organisational objectives. With an international reputation for pioneering research into this field, Ulster University successfully bid to host the annual conference in Belfast.

The prestigious conference will cover key themes including knowledge management in the public sector, university-industry knowledge transfer and tools for knowledge management. Chaired by senior Ulster University academics in computing and innovation, it will allow delegates to explore how knowledge can be used to enhance products and services, drive sales and profit, and improve customer satisfaction.

Keynote addresses will be delivered by high-profile speakers, including Alistair Fee, a leading authority on innovation and design thinking, and Major Barry Byrne, Chief Information and Knowledge Management Officer for the Irish Defence Forces.

Dr Sandra Moffett, a global expert in knowledge management from Ulster University, said: “The effective use of knowledge is a key ingredient in all successful organisations, no matter what sector they are in or what services or products they provide. To be named as host of such a significant European conference in this management field is a reflection of Ulster University’s commitment to delivering research that enhances innovation practices across all organisations.”

During a pre-conference workshop, Ulster University launched its latest pioneering research into knowledge management within the non-profit sector. The three-year study, which was funded by the then Department for Employment and Learning, explored how third sector organisatons can utilise knowledge to deliver service quality and create value through engagement with multiple stakeholders.  

Speaking about the research, Dr Moffett added: “This new Ulster University research examined how knowledge management can contribute to improved service delivery in third sector organisations (TSOs).

“The study highlights the potential for disparity between the outcomes important to service users and those important to funders who are seeking best value for money. It found that TSOs could improve quality of service through the process of co-evaluation. This involves engaging with both parties, for example via consultation meetings, to ensure service user voice is being heard and acted upon. Engagement platforms such as this will extend the potential for knowledge transfer to better inform future Government policy.

“Ulster University’s research also found that service quality enables improved value to be created and delivered through exchanges with stakeholders.  In addition to identifying types, levels and sources of value, the study reflected important value creation processes and mechanisms which could help the sector to increase competitiveness in tough economic times.”