insights

A tool for sharing knowledge within a company: multimedia libraries

The first virtual library was created by Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of HTML and putative father of the Web, in 1991 at CERN in Geneva: it was a repertory of internet sites, filed by topic, and compiled by a group of experts. Over time, the concept of the virtual library has evolved, thanks to new opportunities offered by Web 2.0, transforming it into a dynamic space of knowledge in which a variety of organised digital – and non-digital – resources can be found that are easily accessible to users. A prime example of this is the virtual library of the American Alzheimer Association. Virtual libraries can rely on the support of a faculty or, in any case, a team of experts that choose resources and put in place guided courses and in particular, certificates, to facilitate the development of knowledge and skills in a given learning environment. A good virtual library, however, must also be able to offer surfers the opportunity to freely explore its content and create personalised pathways of learning. In the area of company training, the virtual library can be used to facilitate the sharing of information, self-training and informal learning. The virtual library can play a strategic role in facilitating the sharing of information and knowledge within large companies, which operate on a multinational and/or global scale and that use teams which are dispersed geographically. An article by Lori Soard in Small Business clearly explains the main advantages of a virtual library for a company. At the same time, small companies can also make use of the opportunities given by a virtual library, including the development of inter-company projects. In the more modern version, the virtual library has become a social tool, implementing 2.0 based approaches. For example, the Business School of the University of Stanford has created a virtual library for sharing projects created by students on the strategic communication course. In Italy, various experiments are underway. In particular, we would like to mention a virtual library project, still in the start-up phase, that has been created by a large financial group. The project, in which Amicucci Formazione is a partner, plans to create a virtual library for the management and staff. The project aims to facilitate the sharing of knowledge and the development of professional skills through the innovation of environments, languages and learning practices, in a 2.0 perspective. Fabrizio Maimone

Scritto da: Fabrizio Maimone

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