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The importance of the

knowledge economy

Conor Gilligan, Vice President at

webanywhere - a multi award-winning

eLearning provider - looks at how the

diversification of the knowledge economy

could affect the future workplace.

More than ever, companies and entire

countries are exploring how they can skill up

to cater for the increasing demands of the

workplace. The knowledge embodied in

human beings (as 'human capital') and in

technology have always been central to

economic development.

It has been estimated that more than 50% of

GDP in the major economies of the OECD

(Organisation for Economic Co-operation and

Development) is due to knowledge-based


Knowledge and learning

As a result in this shift to the knowledge

economy, skills development has become

more important than ever. In a corporate

environment, employees are no longer

expected to focus on one area and are being

constantly challenged to develop their skills

more quickly.

The demand for this speed of change is due

to the vast amount of knowledge and

information available via mobile devices.

For example, retailers such as H&M are

competing with online fashion companies

such as ASOS. Traditionally, a typical

customer would walk into a H&M shop

looking for something to buy. Instead of

selecting and buying at the counter,

consumers are now using ecommerce to

make price comparisons online.

How does the sales consultant in the store

manage this? Kraft Foods has used this new

way of shopping to develop a social

knowledge-sharing platform which includes

clever tagging to link learning across stores

and includes pricing experts.

Conor Gilligan

Vice President


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