Towards Wisdom: Knowledge Management and the Ethical Use of Big Data in Organizational Decision-Making


  • Maddie Hare


Knowledge Management, big data, decision-making, ethics


The volume, velocity, and variety of big data pose enormous opportunity for organizations looking to gain competitive advantage. As they look to derive new insights from massive datasets, Knowledge Managers play a crucial role in how data is ethically utilized by organizations to produce knowledge, and subsequently, how that knowledge is operationalized. This paper advocates that those in the evolving responsibilities of knowledge managers require the prioritization of KM strategies that consider the ethics of using big data and that they should advance those considerations in all areas of their organization. This paper discusses what big data is and how traditional definitions can be expanded to account for factors like embedded bias and its associated risks. It discusses the intersections of big data and Knowledge Management in organizational practice and considers how using big data in Knowledge Management and organizational decision-making can be done in a socially responsible way. It argues that this can be achieved through knowledge managers implementing Knowledge Management strategies and systems that contend not only with big data's magnitude, but also with its depth.


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