Knowledge Mobilization (KMb): Multiple Contributions & Multi-Production Of New Knowledge

Knowledge Competition

There are many examples of knowledge as competition in this world.  Most often knowledge is viewed as competition between opponents in a debate, or at other times as a test or exam you have to go through – answering many questions or solving several problems to grade you above others.  In all of these cases, these examples assume that knowledge is about competition. In these cases, knowledge is about being better than someone else – not about being participants who work together with other people to achieve benefit for everyone.

Unfortunately, many people have relegated themselves to the position of knowledge competitor.  I think it’s been so ingrained in us in society that we don’t even realize how often we do it. Years can go by with such knowledge competition and a person can end up with tremendous knowledge to help make the world a better place – and yet never use this valuable knowledge to do so.

While I do believe competition can spark knowledge, an exclusive focus on knowledge competition without giving thought towards sharing knowledge and being open to other knowledge inevitably limits knowledge. I believe it’s important for us to be active participants sharing knowledge in our lives rather than knowledge competitors.  Not all of us will be geniuses, knowledge leaders, researchers or eloquent knowledge communicators, but each of us certainly has a role to play in sharing knowledge to support the geniuses, knowledge leaders, researchers or communicators by helping to teach them or remind them that the most important and fundamental lessons of knowledge sharing stem from love, respect, dignity and honour for all of humanity and the world we live in. 

It’s widely known in the Knowledge Mobilization (KMb) world that knowledge brokers don’t just connect geniuses, knowledge leaders, researchers or communicators as part of the KMb team to inform policy or decision makers.  Some of the knowledge contributors that knowledge brokers connect have never gone to university nor have any academic credentials. Knowledge brokers inherently recognize the equality, value and complementarity of scholarly or academic knowledge and community-based or practice-based knowledge through individual life experiences. For an example about the work of knowledge brokers link here.

So, remember the importance of sharing your own knowledge – whatever knowledge it may be. Get in there and share whatever knowledge your life has given you – and be open to similar knowledge from others. Life – and knowledge – is not about competition. Share your own knowledge with pride and dignity, and be a role model for others and those who will come after you and with those who have different knowledge to share. Don’t think knowledge is about competition where you might fail miserably if you don’t compete. Don’t just sit there with your knowledge and wish you were out there – put yourself out there in the thick of things and share your own knowledge (no matter how “limited” you might think it is) as much as you can.  And don’t think your knowledge is superior to others in the knowledge competition of life. We will all die someday, and we don’t know when that will be.  Make sure that on the day you die, you can say “I certainly shared all the knowledge I had – and was always open to the knowledge of others” and then you can leave this world with the ultimate knowledge that you made it a better place with your own knowledge. Knowledge is of little value if it does not lead to action.

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