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Knowledge transfer and performance dialogue in public administration
KNOWLEDGE TRANSFER AND PERFORMANCE
DIALOGUE IN PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION
Research director Harri Laihonen, PhD
Co-authored with Tomi Rajala (2) and Petra Haapala (3)
NEXT TWO PRESENTATIONS
PURPOSE AND RESEARCH QUESTIONS
• The paper studies performance dialogues as knowledge transfer platforms. Theoretically,
performance dialogue enables knowledge transfer but in practice, there are several
hindrances for the dialogue and knowledge transfer. This paper aims to map these
obstacles as a first step to overcome them and improve performance management in
What is it?
Who should be involved?
Where does it take place?
When is the time?
Why it may not happen?
WHAT IS IT?
PERFORMANCE DIALOGUE – A DEFINITION
We define basic characteristics of performance dialogue in the following way:
• The dialogue focuses on performance
• The dialogue builds upon the performance information
• The dialogue has more than one participant
• The guidelines to engaging in and conducting dialogue needs to be followed
• The dialogue has an explicitly stated objective
WHO, WHERE AND WHEN?
EVERYONE, EVERYWHERE AND NOW
Simple, robots and AI will take care
in the future
Disagreement on 1) what to do, 2) how to
do and/or 3) how to evaluate success
Vrt. Van Dooren: Performance information in the public sector (2010)
Knowledge management as analytics
Knowledge management as a
• Literature review: Knowledge transfer + knowledge sharing barriers + dialogic leadership
- Features of
• Empirical data was gathered by interviewing 30 managers in three cities in Finland:
Tampere, Turku and Espoo.
• The aim of the interviews was to find out managers’ perceptions on the existing practices
of performance dialogue and the current strengths and challenges of these practices.
Thematic interviews were structured based on the theoretical framework describing
performance dialogue as a phenomenon.
• Interviews were carried out between November 2016 and March 2017. The interviewed
managers represented top-level management of their organizations. Two of the studied
organizational contexts were line organizations whereas the third context was a hybrid
where 10 different public, private and non-profit organizations operate in the same
AS PERCEIVED BY 30 MANAGERS
• Lack of IT skills
• Ability to understand performance reports
• Limited handling capability
• Lack of common language
• Transparency of the dialogue
• Use on digital platforms
• Lack of the needed information
• Incompatible information systems
• Different practices and cultures
• Political context
CONTRIBUTION OF THE STUDY
• We created two theoretical contributions.
1. We defined performance dialogue as a phenomenon and linked it to the discussion on knowledge
2. We derived three categories from the earlier literature to conduct content analysis.
• These conceptual contributions enable the analysis of individual and external factors
affecting knowledge transfer in performance dialogues.
• In the empirical part of the study, we validated our framework and gathered managers’
perceptions of the studied phenomenon.
• We are now able to explain why performance dialogues appear the way they do and how
an individual and organizations can shape the dialogue by determining, for example, its
objectives, forums, content or participants.
• Research director Harri Laihonen
• University of Tampere, Faculty of Management