Presentation Details

The Fourth International Conference on Knowledge, Culture and Change in Organisations

The Challenges of Knowledge Management in the rainbow economy: A South African perspective

Finestone Nicozaan.

Knowledge management in South Africa is still a very new field of management and knowledge practitioners are experiencing difficulties with the added dimension of multiculturalism. The history of South Africa, along with its current focus on cultural equality, complicates the matter. This research looked at the challenges facing knowledge practitioners in a multicultural South African corporate environment. An exploratory study, using in-depth interviewing as definitive data collection method, was launched to explore South African knowledge management practices in a cross-section of companies in the economy. Results showed that companies were afraid to acknowledge cultural differences because of major cultural sensitivity and as a result, corporate culture was often seen as the great equaliser of individual cultures. Knowledge practitioners, along with top management’s support, must rather create a cooperative knowledge-sharing environment in which South Africa’s diverse cultures can interact, learn from each other and innovate.


Finestone Nicozaan  (South Africa)
Master's student in Knowledge Management
Department of Information Science Faculty of Engineering, Built Environment and Information Technology
University of Pretoria

Nicozaan Finestone has recently completed her Master's Degree in Information Science (Knowledge Management) at the University of Pretoria. Her previous qualifications include a Honours degree in Publishing (UP, South Africa). She is currently a publishing coordinator and materials developer at an educational publisher in South Africa.

  • Corporate culture
  • Knowledge management
  • Knowledge sharing
  • Multiculturalism

(30 min. Conference Paper, English)