Blurring the distinction between tacit and explicit knowledge

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6 Citations (Scopus)


Knowledge, both tacit and explicit, is an important component of the decision making process. Knowledge-based systems research has concentrated on explicit knowledge and has found knowledge acquisition to be a major bottleneck. Knowledge management research has stressed the importance of tacit knowledge but offers few technological solutions for its identification and transfer. Ripple Down Rules offers a simple way of directly acquiring knowledge from a domain expert. The type of knowledge captured by Ripple Down Rules is not distinguished as tacit or explicit because the knowledge acquisition technique does not rely on the expert to specify what they know. Instead, knowledge is captured in action as the expert exercises their knowledge while interacting with concrete cases. Others can utilise the knowledge by executing the rules or they can develop and compare models to internalise the knowledge using such techniques as formal concept analysis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)149-164
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Decision Systems
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2002


  • explicit knowledge
  • formal concept analysis
  • knowledge based systems
  • knowledge management
  • Ripple down rules
  • tacit knowledge


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