Knowledge for Development : Global Partnership Conference.

3 and 4 April 2017, in Room XXIV, at the Palais des Nations hosted by the United Nations Office in Geneva (UNOG).



The Joint Inspection Unit of the United Nations system (JIU) and Knowledge Management  Austria (KMA) co-organize the Knowledge for Development : Global Partnership Conference. The conference will take place on 3 and 4 April 2017, in Room XXIV, at the Palais des Nations hosted by the United Nations Office in Geneva (UNOG).

One of the highlights of the Conference will be the official launching of the JIU report entitled “Knowledge management in the United Nations system” (JIU/REP/2016/10). Good practice and initiatives within and outside the United Nations system will be shared and future possible initiatives will be discussed.

The conference is also expected to contribute to the activation of a global partnership in making full use of knowledge as a strategic asset of the United Nations system in the spirit of the Sustainable Development Goal 17 and the Agenda 2030.

Another highlight will be the presentation of “Agenda Knowledge for Development”, initiated by KMA and supported by Knowledge Management for Development (KM4Dev), a community of experts on knowledge management and development representing international organizations, academia and civil society. Details about the speakers and the draft agenda of the Conference are posted also on the KMA website (http://www.km-a.net/english/en-networking/k4d-geneva-2017/).

Please find herewith a link to the registration form: KM Conference Registration Form.docKM Conference Registration Form.doc

Filled out forms and confirmations of participation have to be sent to the following JIU email address at least 3 working days before the start date of the conference, by 30 March 2017: jiu.knowledgemanagement@unog.ch.

Notably, JIU will be presented with the Knowledge Management Award 2017 for its contribution to the promotion of knowledge management across the United Nations system.

The Joint Inspection Unit receives the Knowledge Management Award 2017
Knowledge Management Austria (KMA) has decided to award the Joint Inspection Unit of the United Nations system with the Knowledge Management Award 2017. The Award shall be handed over to Inspector Petru Dumitriu “as the leading figure in the process of inspecting, reviewing, mobilizing and advocating for Knowledge Management in the UN System”, and the coordinator of the project team that produced the report entitled “Knowledge management in the United Nations system” (JIU/REP/2016/10), who will accept it on behalf of the Joint Inspection Unit.
The Knowledge Award ceremony will take place on Monday, 3 April 2017, at 5.30 pm, at the Palais des Nations, Room XXIV, on the occasion of the Knowledge for Development: Global Partnership Conference (3-4 April 2017). The Conference will provide insights on current best practices and explore future developments in the use of knowledge management, where knowledge is seen as essential element for the achievement of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

About KMA: KMA is a knowledge partnership based in Vienna, with a triple institutional personality: KM-Associates, a private entity that provides advisory services and consultancy in knowledge management; KM-Academy, which offers training for knowledge managers; and KM-Austria, which provides a scientific basis for management of knowledge in business and societies. KMA is also host of the Austrian Knowledge Partnership, a platform for people, organizations and corporations committed to develop a knowledge-based society, that is responsible, high-performing, worth living and sustainable.
About the Knowledge Management Award: Every year, the Knowledge Management Award called “The Pillar of Knowledge” is conferred to an international organization and/or an individual personality for outstanding accomplishments in research, realization and innovation in knowledge management and knowledge politics. The individual Knowledge Management Award 2017 will go to Professor Leif Edvinsson from Sweden.
The original sculpture titled “The Pillar of Knowledge” was created by the Tyrolean artist Helmut Margreiter as a “Statue of Liberty of the Knowledge Society”. The creative tension of knowing and not-knowing, of preservations and innovation and of identity and change, will ignite the spark of freedom and responsibility.
Previous Award winners:
• 2009: Prof. Dr. Ursula Schneider-Hendrich
• 2010: Dr. Charles Savage  and  IAEA
• 2011: Prof. Dr. Stefan Güldenberg  and UNESCO
• 2012: Prof. Dr. Nico Stehr and UNDP
• 2013: World Bank
• 2014: Prof. Klaus North
• 2015: Dr. Angelika Mittelmann and  UNESCO
• 2016: Dr. Ibrahim Seba Al Marri and Global KM4Dev Community




 Just released: JIU/REP/2016/10

The Joint Inspection Unit (JIU) completed a review on knowledge management in the United Nations system organizations construed on the assumption that knowledge is a valuable core asset of the organizations and their best comparative advantage. The report was released on 28 February 2017. Considering that the United Nations system is the generator and catalyst of a special kind of knowledge — one that is based on values, the report found also that knowledge management would be an important contribution to the implementation of the new holistic and collaborative approach on which the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is based. Knowledge can break down silos and be the most natural integrative factor system-wide and for all the stakeholders in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda.

Knowledge management remains a challenge for the United Nations system organizations in their attempt to systematically and efficiently develop, organize, share and integrate knowledge to achieve their cross-cutting goals. Knowledge management is not yet a strategic priority in all United Nations system organizations and there are no common practices that are accepted or shared system-wide.

Nevertheless, some organizations have comprehensive and time-tested practices, and knowledge management is part of their operational reality.  Knowledge management strategies were developed by organizations that have complex institutional structures at headquarters, regional and national levels. They can inspire or help other organizations in developing their own strategies.

The report offers clarifications of basic concepts, such as data, information and knowledge. A wide array of specific mandate-oriented definitions of knowledge and knowledge management has been extracted from existing strategies.

Knowledge management prevents waste of money, time and human resources. Overspending money is easily detected, but overspending time is almost neglected. Knowledge management benefits are not achieved directly nor overnight. The prevention of errors and the savings that are often achieved through better use and reuse of existing knowledge are practically invisible in accounting terms.

Knowledge management helps to qualify and identify what the organization knows, where and in what form the knowledge is located, how organized is the access to knowledge and what are the best ways to transfer knowledge to the right people at the right time. Knowledge management will help organizations learn from past failures and successes, redeploy and reuse existing knowledge assets, solve problems or innovate, foster and develop the right competencies, update and remove obsolete knowledge and ensure that knowledge and competencies are not lost.

Knowledge management is a participative process, in which the personal proactive attitude of knowledge workers is essential. Formal action is a sine qua non condition, but without conscious involvement and awareness on the part of staff, a knowledge management system will not produce the expected results.

The recommendations are aimed at enhancing the role of knowledge management in the service of the 2030 Agenda, by filling the gaps in knowledge management system-wide, based on existing practices;  valorising human resources and the knowledge acquired by staff in their organizations; stimulating common system-wide initiatives, in general, and in the specific context of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. One recommendation is addressed to the General Assembly, two recommendations to the Secretary-General, in his capacity as head of the United Nations Secretariat, and four recommendations to the executive heads of the United Nations system organizations.