Measuring knowledge management capacities to strengthen health systems: the development and application of the Knowledge Management Index for global health and development

Authors

  • Saori Ohkubo Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs
  • Anne Ballard Sara Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs, USA
  • Rupali J. Limaye Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA
  • Naheed Ahmed nahmed12@terpmail.umd.edu

Keywords:

knowledge management, organizational learning, global health, KM, capacity, measurement

Abstract

Programmatic and technical knowledge is crucial to strengthening health systems. Knowledge management (KM) is an evidence-based approach that enables health professionals to have the right knowledge at the right time to positively affect health outcomes. However, there is a gap in measuring and understanding KM capacity strengthening for global health. To address this challenge, the “Knowledge Management Index” was developed. The KM Index aims to examine an organization’s or project’s use of KM practices, identify opportunities for improvement, and map out an action plan to strengthen the KM capacity. The KM Index measures the capacity in four fundamental KM practice areas: 1) organizational structure (KM vision and strategy), 2) learning opportunities (professional development), 3) internal KM culture (seeking out and sharing knowledge), and 4) KM for global health (effort to advance global health agenda). This paper details the iterative learning and development process of the Index, and results and lessons learned from implementing the Index with a regional health organization in East Africa as well as a United States of America-based global health project. Finally, we will examine the flexibility and adaptability of the KM index and discuss implications for further application of the KM Index.

Author Biographies

Anne Ballard Sara, Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs, USA

Anne Ballard Sara is a Program Officer II at the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs. She provides technical assistance to knowledge management, behavior change, family planning, infectious disease, and research programs. Her current interests include measuring the effects of knowledge management (KM) and the integration of behavioral economics and KM. She holds a Master of Public Health from George Washington University. 

Rupali J. Limaye , Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA

Rupali J. Limaye serves as a full-time faculty member at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, in the Departments of International Health, Epidemiology, and Health, Behavior and Society. She also serves as the Associate Director for Behavioral Research at the Institute for Vaccine Safety and leads projects at the International Vaccine Access Center. Dr. Limaye is a social and behavioral scientist and health communication scholar. Her mixed-method work examines how various influences affect health behavior and how to leverage those influences to affect positive behavior change. She also studies how health information can best be communicated to individuals in different contexts and through different channels.

Naheed Ahmed, nahmed12@terpmail.umd.edu

Naheed Ahmed is an instructor at the University of Maryland, College Park, USA. She has worked on public health projects overseas and in the U.S. covering a range of topics, such as HIV prevention, family planning, and discrimination. She holds a PhD in Family Science from the University of Maryland, College Park, and an MA in Applied Bio-cultural Medical Anthropology and MPH from the University of South Florida. 

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Published

2020-09-11