Knowledge management is a discipline that takes a comprehensive, systematic approach to the information assets of an organization by identifying, capturing, collecting, organizing, indexing, storing, integrating, retrieving and sharing them. Such assets include intellectual capital, employee expertise, business and competitive intelligence, and organizational memory.
As the knowledge economy continues to take shape in the 21st century, the factors of production are shifting from physical and financial assets to knowledge assets. A knowledge economy is a growth economy, characterized by high levels of innovation, agile and fast-growing organizations, increased flows of ideas, knowledge and information, and investments in intellectual capital. The success of every organization will depend on its ability to generate, adopt and diffuse knowledge to become knowledge organizations. The skills and tools required to manage a knowledge organization build upon, but are different from, those required to manage an industrial-era organization. These new skills and tools are found in the emerging domain of knowledge management (KM).