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TitleDesigning and developing a prototype indigenous knowledge database and devising a knowledge management framework
AuthorJordaan, Leandra
SubjectCentral University of Technology, Free State - Dissertations
SubjectDatabase design
SubjectKnowledge management
SubjectInformation storage and retrieval systems
SubjectInformation technology
SubjectGraphical user interfaces (Computer systems)
SubjectDissertations, academic - South Africa - Bloemfontein
Format3 662 000 bytes
AbstractThesis (M. Tech.) - Central University of Technology, Free State, 2009
AbstractThe purpose of the study was to design and develop a prototype Indigenous Knowledge (IK) database that will be productive within a Knowledge Management (KM) framework specifically focused on IK. The need to develop a prototype IK database that can help standardise the work being done in the field of IK within South Africa has been established in the Indigenous Knowledge Systems (IKS) policy, which stated that “common standards would enable the integration of widely scattered and distributed references on IKS in a retrievable form. This would act as a bridge between indigenous and other knowledge systems” (IKS policy, 2004:33). In particular within the indigenous people’s organizations, holders of IK, whether individually or collectively, have a claim that their knowledge should not be exploited for elitist purposes without direct benefit to their empowerment and the improvement of their livelihoods. Establishing guidelines and a modus operandi (KM framework) are important, especially when working with communities. Researchers go into communities to gather their knowledge and never return to the communities with their results. The communities feel enraged and wronged. Creating an IK network can curb such behaviour or at least inform researchers/organisations that this behaviour is damaging. The importance of IK is that IK provides the basis for problem-solving strategies for local communities, especially the poor, which can help reduce poverty. IK is a key element of the “social capital” of the poor; their main asset to invest in the struggle for survival, to produce food, to provide shelter, or to achieve control of their own lives. It is closely intertwined with their livelihoods. Many aspects of KM and IK were discussed and a feasibility study for a KM framework was conducted to determine if any existing KM frameworks can work in an organisation that works with IK. Other factors that can influence IK are: guidelines for implementing a KM framework, information management, quality management, human factors/capital movement, leading role players in the field of IK, Intellectual Property Rights (IPR), ethics, guidelines for doing fieldwork, and a best plan for implementation. At this point, the focus changes from KM and IK to the prototype IK database and the technical design thereof. The focus is shifted to a more hands-on development by looking at the different data models and their underlying models. A well-designed database facilitates data management and becomes a valuable generator of information. A poorly designed database is likely to become a breeding ground for redundant data. The conceptual design stage used data modelling to create an abstract database structure that represents real-world objects in the most authentic way possible. The tools used to design the database are platform independent software; therefore the design can be implemented on many different platforms. An elementary prototype graphical user interface was designed in order to illustrate the database’s three main functions: adding new members, adding new IK records, and searching the IK database. The IK database design took cognisance of what is currently prevailing in South Africa and the rest of the world with respect to IK and database development. The development of the database was done in such a way as to establish a standard database design for IK systems in South Africa. The goal was to design and develop a database that can be disseminated to researchers/organisations working in the field of IK so that the use of a template database can assist work in the field. Consequently the work in the field will be collected in the same way and based on the same model. At a later stage, the databases could be interlinked and South Africa can have one large knowledge repository for IK.
PublisherBloemfontein : Central University of Technology, Free State