Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) drive today’s economy. They account for more than 90 % of enterprises worldwide (Khalique et al. 2015). SMEs show specific characteristics that distinguish them from large enterprises. Most often, no formal knowledge management (KM) is in place and business depends particularly on the tacit knowledge of the entrepreneurs and employees (Durst & Edvardsson, 2012).
Despite the importance and distinctiveness of small businesses, KM research has paid little attention to it (Serenko, 2013). Massaro et al (2016, p. 277) call “scholars to increase efforts to find new, relevant, research avenues by focusing on what makes SMEs a specific and unique research context rather than replicating concepts derived from larger organisations”.
This conference track provides the opportunity to bring together current research on the prospects and challenges associated with the SMEs’ knowledge practices. It gathers current research addressing the characteristics of SMEs in terms of knowledge management and neighbouring fields such as organizational learning, intellectual capital, strategic management, philosophy (epistemology), human resources, and other research areas.
We invite scholars, practitioners, and policy-makers to contribute to the scientific dialogue. We welcome all types of papers, both conceptual and empirical, using diverse methods to provide new insights into KM practice in SMEs.
Topics relevant for submissions include, but are not limited to the following:
- Defining characteristics of SMEs from a knowledge and learning perspective (compared to large enterprises)
- Organizational learning and unlearning
- Research on (non-)knowledge intensive SMEs
- Factors affecting KM practices (critical success factors)
- (Alternative) concepts of knowledge (epistemologies)
- KM in micro-enterprises
- Comparative research in respect to organisational contexts, economic branches, and countries
- KM tools, instruments, and strategies to foster creation, development, and sharing of (tacit) knowledge
- The role of entrepreneurs in KM practice
- The role of information technology in KM practice
- The impact of knowledge processes on performance
WU Vienna University of Economics and Business, Austria