Wiki Workplace

Don Tapscott and Anthony D. Williams in BusinessWeeks wikinomics series on the “Wiki Workplace”, i.e. online collaboration and decentralized knowledge collection, refinement and distribution. Besides, the article notes some examples of good corporate use, e.g. by companies like Xerox, IBM (see here for more on Innovation Jams) and (again) Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein.

Thanks in part to younger workers, more companies are using social computing tools to aid collaboration and to foster innovation and growth.
The information and communication technologies that are transforming media, culture, and the economy are also reshaping how companies and employees function. New social computing tools such as wikis and blogs put unprecedented communication power in the hands of employees.

I would hold that this is no question of age, but of disposition, i.e. willingness to participate, to share and to commit ourselves, it’s a people issue from the start, it’s a big task, yet the goal is worthwhile:

Clear goals, structure, discipline, and leadership in the organization will remain as important as ever and perhaps more so as self-organization and peer production emerge as organizing principles for the workplace. The difference today is that these qualities can emerge organically as employees seize the new tools to collaborate across departmental and organizational boundaries, and, yes, “the power of human capital” can be unleashed.

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