Solving the dilemma: sharing knowledge with partner organizations versus protecting knowledge to prevent spillover
by Edward Gubler, Lobke Habets, Maximilian Kritsch and Estelle Muys
Resilience of an organization can be increased in two ways: on the one hand by protecting the knowledge of the organization so that in a crisis the knowledge is safe. On the other hand by being ﬂexible and innovative through sharing knowledge with external organizations. A dilemma appears when combining these two elements: protecting the knowledge versus sharing knowledge. Through a literature study, this paper explores the beneﬁts and risks of knowledge sharing and looks into diﬀerent types of knowledge protection. Hereafter, a matrix is presented based on the importance level of the knowledge that recommends organizations to use a speciﬁc protection mechanism can be used for each risk of knowledge sharing. The discussion remains if the proposed protection mechanisms would function in every organization: hierarchical organizations might adopt employee restrictions earlier than ﬂat organizations. In the future, the matrix should be tested through implementation into real organizations, where after the proposed matrix can be optimized.
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