The Alignment of Knowledge Strategies
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This thesis is a collection of four manuscripts linked by the aim of extending strategic alignment thought into the knowledge management domain by explicitly including the concept of knowledge strategy into the discussion of strategic alignment. In the first paper, a set of common knowledge strategy dimensions was synthesized and used to link two existing knowledge strategy typologies. The key finding of the study was that the two typologies operated at different strategic levels, allowing for the creation of portfolios of the lower order types under each higher order type. In the second paper, a model of strategic alignment between business, information system and knowledge strategy was presented and tested using survey data. It was found that the combination of aligned information and knowledge strategies with their associated business strategy resulted in higher performance for defenders, analyzers and prospectors and that the alignment of non-viable strategies led to worse performance than individual non-viable strategies alone. In the third paper, case studies provided examples of alignment and misalignment which were used to populate a framework linking alignment and performance. Four explanations for firms’ location in the model were provided, focusing on appropriate versus inappropriate alignment, conscious versus unconscious misalignment, antagonistic alignment versus misalignment, and strategic alignment versus misalignment. In the final paper, the Strategic Orientation of Knowledge-Based Enterprises (STROKE) instrument was developed to capture the orientation of knowledge strategy employment in firms. During the development process, a new statistic was developed to aid in the validation of card sorts during the scale development step of instrument creation.