Organizational Knowledge Communication – a Nascent 3rd Order Disciplinarity
Keywords:Organization, communication, knowledge, triple helix of disciplinary trajectories, trilateral punctual integration, 3rd order disciplinarity
There is an emerging tendency that the organizational communication functions of larger companies enter into a symbiotic relationship with the companies’ Knowledge Management function. A tendency this journal has labelled Organizational Knowledge Communication. This should come as no surprise to neither the researcher nor the practitioner; after all who can say where a corporation’s knowledge work ends and where its organizational communication begins – and vice versa? In this paper I will present a theoretical account of the three disciplinary trajectories that, in my view, have given rise to Organizational Knowledge Communication, i.e., organization studies, communication theory and Knowledge Management, respectively. In their synthesis the three trajectories form a disciplinary triple helix, a triple helix which, in turn, gives rise to Organizational Knowledge Communication as a novel, 3rd order disciplinarity. Whereas each discipline is a strand in its own right in the helix, these strands, nevertheless, also allow for disciplinary integration, albeit punctually and dynamically. And it is exactly in such trilateral punctual and dynamic integrations that Organizational Knowledge Communication becomes visible, becomes a disciplinarity. I theoretically present an example of such a punctual integration and point to some of the immediate research promises that it holds. This theoretical account ends by describing Organizational Knowledge Communication as a nascent 3rd order disciplinarity.
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