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Research & Development

Institute for Knowledge Management

Knowledge management must be closely related to practical needs, interdisciplinary, and up to date. Many business enterprises lose knowledge that is critical to their success when an employee leaves. At the same time, an ever greater shortage of skilled labour is foreseeable based on demographic developments.

These examples alone make it clear that there has been a serious increase in the demands that knowledge management and personnel development must meet in a business enterprise. It is an area in which systematic, long-term, and application-oriented research is necessary.

Research in the field of knowledge management is therefore concerned with identifying, developing, and introducing methods and instruments that can be applied to knowledge management with a better-than-average cost/benefit ratio.

If you are interested in becoming a cooperating partner and implementing innovative projects, then please feel free to speak to Prof. Michael Städler at the Institute for Knowledge Management.

  • Projects

    In recent years, HSW has been involved in the following projects:

    • The end of 2014 saw the completion of the two-year “KonSenS” research project in the “technical side” category. The IT-related research project, which was conducted by HSW and Next Vision GmbH, a medium-size provider of business intelligence solutions, received support from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy. The centrepiece of the research project was the development of an intuitive means of access to all of a business enterprise’s data and repositories of know-how by means of artificial intelligence. The project resulted in a search engine that is based on ad hoc ontologies and with which a business enterprise’s unstructured data can be indexed and searched for semantic equivalences. This search engine was used in a prototypical application, the KonSenS Process Explorer, to semi-automatically search for and document hidden processes in the data structures of business enterprises. The source code for the search engine that was developed can be found at

    • Also situated on the “technical side”, the Institute for Knowledge Management assists HSW’s own Institute for Efficient Energy Use (IEE) in the development of “smart” measuring technology for renewable energy. In this multifarious and dynamic environment, the highest level of quality is required for requirements management and software development. In the field of software quality management, quality assurance processes and testing methods for software and software requirements are studied with small teams of developers in mind along with product quality metrics.

    • In the “organisational side” research category, work is currently being done in cooperation with the Detmold district government for application to the organisational development of the Eastern Westphalia-Lippe region’s vocational college. In moderated workshops and with the aid of the intellectual capital assessment method, analyses of strengths and weaknesses and actions for recommendation have been carried out since 2009 for various vocational colleges for profile development purposes. You can form an impression of a specific example of school development here. Eastern Westphalia-Lippe is the first region in all of Germany to systematically support school development with intellectual capital assessment. To that end a public conference was organised and a practician’s handbook was developed. A book project based thereon that concerns knowledge-oriented change management is in preparation.

    • In August 2014, a research project in the “human side” category was launched with the support of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. The Institute for Knowledge Management is cooperating with the Institute for Sociology at the Technical University of Darmstadt in connection with the research project “Open IT bachelor and open IT master – from IT practician to bachelor of business informatics and master of IT business management”. The aim of the project, which is initially scheduled to run until January 2018, is to further train qualified IT experts on a scientific level, in bachelor’s or master’s programmes designed for working professionals, with recognition of their professional pre-qualifications. For this, universities need more open curricula and more permeable infrastructures that will ultimately make it possible to combine work, family life, and study.


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