Title: Knowledge management practices applied within a TSO: the role of technical responsibility centres

Authors: Benoît Bernard

Addresses: Human and Organizational Factors, Bel V, Belgian TSO, Rue Walcourt 148, B-1070 Brussels, Belgium

Abstract: In this paper, we point out the crucial role of a 'Community-of-Practices' (COP) for a knowledge intensive organisation as a Technical Safety Organisation (TSO) in the nuclear field. These COPs, called Technical Responsibility Centres (TRCs) within the Belgian TSO, are non-hierarchical networks of typically 36 experts, active in a well-defined technical domain. The paper shows the strong impact of TRCs on knowledge 'building blocks' (identification, acquisition, development, distribution, utilisation and retention). More specifically, we want to argue that the hybrid TRC framework enables effective trade-offs between knowledge management tensions (tacit-explicit, individual-collective…) and raises new avenues concerning the manageability of COP debate.

Keywords: nuclear knowledge management; COP; communities of practice; TSO; technical safety organisations; hybrid organisational form; Belgium; nuclear safety; nuclear energy; nuclear power.

DOI: 10.1504/IJNKM.2011.045711

International Journal of Nuclear Knowledge Management, 2011 Vol.5 No.4, pp.348 - 360

Available online: 27 Feb 2012 *

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