Budget Deficit and Challenges of Knowledge Management in Higher Education: A Case Study of Two International Universities in the Netherlands

Shohreh Parham, Zijian Wang


Over the past decade, knowledge management has become an increasingly important and critical issue. Both the scientific and commercial communities maintain that organizations with knowledge power can sustain their long-term competitive superiorities. Universities and higher education institutes are the main centers for the production and dissemination of knowledge and, as such, it is certainly necessary for them to implement an appropriate Knowledge Management System (KMS). In the 21st century, successful educational organizations will make use of knowledge and information in a more efficient way and will apply it to the creation of value. To cope with globalization, it is essential for Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) to effectively implement KMS in their organizations which will lead them to create more value and stay competitive. Even so, universities are facing a number of challenges while implementing KMS and budget deficits is one of the factors affecting the KM process in higher education institutes. There has not been adequate study on the impacts of budget deficit on KM activities in HEIs. The question that arises is:  how can these learning organizations overcome budget cuts and simplify the implementation of KM? The present study aims at investigating the challenges faced by two international universities in the Netherlands. Therefore, the study was conducted through case study design and used the Grounded Theory (GT) approach to unfold the impacts of budgetary deficit on the implementation of KMS within this context. A literature review method has also been used to get a deeper insight into some causes of budget deficit in HEIs. Initial findings of the study show that budget deficits have negative impact on KM activities in HEIs including increased workload for teachers, decrease in knowledge dissemination through publication and longer processes of problem solving activities.

Keywords: Budget Deficit, Knowledge Management, Challenges, Higher Education, International Universities in the Netherlands, Grounded Theory

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ISSN (Paper)2224-5758 ISSN (Online)2224-896X

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