An overview of knowledge sharing in new product development


This paper provides an overview of some of the issues in knowledge management related to the sharing of knowledge in new product development. Previous research and concepts reported by international researchers and examples of the research projects carried out by the authors will be introduced. The paper first provides an overview of the history and importance of innovation and challenges in manufacturing. Then, the importance of new product development in the sustainable success of manufacturing enterprises in the globalised business operations is discussed. The formalisation and modelling of product development processes will also be introduced. The concept and different definitions of knowledge management by previous researchers are then introduced, with further discussion on knowledge sharing. At this point, the authors’ research in knowledge sharing is also introduced. Finally, the trend of using social media and Enterprise 2 technologies in knowledge management and sharing is introduced using the recent research projects of the authors as examples.


  1. 1.

    Mantoux P (1961) The industrial revolution in the eighteenth century: an outline of the beginnings of the modern factory system in England. Jonathan Cape, London

    Google Scholar 

  2. 2.

    Norcliffe G (1997) Popeism and Fordism: examining the roots of mass production. Reg Stud 31(3):267–280

    Article  Google Scholar 

  3. 3.

    National Association of Manufacturers (2006) The facts about modern manufacturing, 7th edn. National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), Washington, DC

  4. 4.

    Elsouri M, Gao J, Owodunni O, Simmonds C, Martin N (2016) An investigation of current challenges in improving manufacturing knowledge management for product design in an aerospace systems manufacturer. Advances in Manufacturing Technology XXX—Proceedings of the 14th International Conference on Manufacturing Research, ISBN 978–1–61499-667-5 (print)

  5. 5.

    World Bank (2015) United Kindgdom - Data,

  6. 6.

    Rhodes C (2014) Manufacturing: statistics and policy. E. P. a. S. Section, UK Government.

  7. 7.

    Trott P (2005) Innovation management and new product development, 3rd edn. Financial Times Prentice Hall, Harlow

    Google Scholar 

  8. 8.

    DTI (2004) DTI review of the government's manufacturing strategy: competing in the global economy—the manufacturing strategy two years On.

  9. 9.

    Kahn KB (2005) The PDMA handbook of new product development, 2nd edn. John Wiley & Sons Inc., New Jersey, Hoboken

  10. 10.

    Toole AA (2012) The impact of public basic research on industrial innovation: evidence from the pharmaceutical industry. Res Policy 41(1):1–12

    MathSciNet  Article  Google Scholar 

  11. 11.

    Kratzer J, Leenders RTAJ, Engelen JMLV (2010) The social network among engineering design teams and their creativity: a case study among teams in two product development programs. Int J Proj Manag 28(5):428–436

    Article  Google Scholar 

  12. 12.

    Jones O, Stevens G (1999) Evaluating failure in the innovation process: the micropolitics of new product development. R&D Manag 29(2):167–178

    Article  Google Scholar 

  13. 13.

    Cooper RG (1994) Perspective third-generation new product processes. J Prod Innovat Manag 11(1):3–14

    Article  Google Scholar 

  14. 14.

    Griffin A (1997) PDMA research on new product development practices: updating trends and benchmarking best practices. J Prod Innovat Manag 14(6):429–458

    Article  Google Scholar 

  15. 15.

    Fredericks E (2005) Cross-functional development in new product development: a resource dependency and human capital perspective. Qualitative Market Research 8(3):327–341

    Article  Google Scholar 

  16. 16.

    Chandrasegaran S, Ramani K, Sriram RD, Horvath I, Bernard A, Harik R, Gao W (2013) The evolution, challenges, and future of knowledge representation in product design systems. Comput Aided Des 45(2):204–228

    Article  Google Scholar 

  17. 17.

    Eppinger SD, Chitkara AR (2006) The new practice of global product development. MIT Sloan Manag Rev 47(4):22–30

    Google Scholar 

  18. 18.

    McDonough EF, Kahn KB, Barczaka G (2001) An investigation of the use of global, virtual, and colocated new product development teams. J Prod Innovat Manag 18(2):110–120

    Article  Google Scholar 

  19. 19.

    Frost A (2014) A Synthesis of Knowledge Management Failure Factors. Retrieved April 1: 2014

  20. 20.

    Porter ME, Millar VE (1985) How information gives you competitive advantage. Harv Bus Rev 63(4):149–160

    Google Scholar 

  21. 21.

    Quinn JB, Anderson P, Finkelstein S (1996) Managing professional intellect: making the most of the best. Harv Bus Rev 74(2):71–80

    Google Scholar 

  22. 22.

    Stewart TA (1998) Intellectual capital: the new wealth of organizations, 1st edn. Nicholas Brealey, London

    Google Scholar 

  23. 23.

    Nonaka I (1991) The knowledge-creating company. Harv Bus Rev 69(6):96–104

    Google Scholar 

  24. 24.

    López-Nicolás C, Meroño-Cerdán ÁL (2011) Strategic knowledge management, innovation and performance. Int J Inf Manag 31(6):502–509

    Article  Google Scholar 

  25. 25.

    Ngai EWT, Chan EWC (2005) Evaluation of knowledge management tools using AHP. Expert Syst Appl 29(1):889–899

    Article  Google Scholar 

  26. 26.

    Perry N and Bernard A (2016) Knowledge Management, CIRP Encyclopedia of Production Engineering, pp 723–729

  27. 27.

    Meihami B, Meihami H (2014) Knowledge management a way to gain a competitive advantage in firms (evidence of manufacturing companies). International Letters of Social and Humanistic Sciences 03:80–91

    Google Scholar 

  28. 28.

    Cummings JN (2004) Work groups, structural diversity, and knowledge sharing in a global organization. Manag Sci 50(3):352–364

    Article  Google Scholar 

  29. 29.

    Polanyi M, Sen A (2009) The tacit dimension. University of Chicago Press, Chicago

    Google Scholar 

  30. 30.

    Labrousse M, Bernard A (2008) FBS-PPRE, an enterprise knowledge lifecycle model, Methods and tools for effective knowledge life-cycle-management, 285–305, Bernard & Tichkiewitch edit, Springer

  31. 31.

    Bernard A and Tichkiewitch S (2008) Methods and tools for effective knowledge lifecycle management, published by Springer, DOI 10.1007/978-3-540-78431-9.

  32. 32.

    Bradfield D, Gao JX (2007) A methodology to facilitate knowledge sharing in the new product development process. Int J Prod Res 45(7):1489–1504

    Article  Google Scholar 

  33. 33.

    Zammit J, Gao J, Evans R (2016) Development of a knowledge sharing framework for improving the testing processes in global product development, international journal of product lifecycle management. Inderscience Enterprises Ltd 9(1):1–18

    Google Scholar 

  34. 34.

    Nonaka I (1994) A dynamic theory of organizational knowledge creation. Organ Sci 5:14–37

    Article  Google Scholar 

  35. 35.

    Choi B, Lee H (2003) An empirical investigation of KM styles and their effect on corporate performance. Inform Manage-Amste 40:403–417

    Article  Google Scholar 

  36. 36.

    Xu Y, Bernard A (2011) Quantifying the value of knowledge within the context of product development. Knowl-Based Syst 24(1):166–175. doi:10.1016/j.knosys.2010.08.001

    Article  Google Scholar 

  37. 37.

    Xu Y, Bernard A (2010) Knowledge value chain: an effective tool to measure knowledge value. Int J Comput Integr Manuf 23(11):957–967. doi:10.1080/0951192X.2010.500677

    Article  Google Scholar 

  38. 38.

    Piorkowski BA, Gao JX, Evans RD, Martin N (2013) A dynamic knowledge management framework for the high value manufacturing industry. Int J Prod Res 51(7):2176–2185

    Article  Google Scholar 

  39. 39.

    Wan S, Li D, Gao J, Roy R, Tong Y (2017) Process and knowledge management in a collaborative maintenance planning system for high value machine tools. Int J Comput Commun 84:14–24

    Google Scholar 

  40. 40.

    Li Y, Wang W, Liu X, Ma Y (2013) Definition and recognition of rib features in aircraft structural part. Int. J. Comput. Integ. M. 27(1):1–19

    Article  Google Scholar 

  41. 41.

    Liu C, Li Y, Shen W (2014) Dynamic feature modelling for closed-loop machining process control of complex parts. Int J Comput Integ M 28(7):753–765

    Article  Google Scholar 

  42. 42.

    Liu X, Li Y, Ma S, Lee C (2015) A tool path generation method for freeform surface machining by introducing the tensor property of machining strip width. Comput. Aided Design 66:1–13

    Article  Google Scholar 

  43. 43.

    Zhou Y, Li Y, Wang W (2011) A feature-based fixture design methodology for the manufacturing of aircraft structural parts. Robot Cim-Int Manuf 27(6):986–993

    Article  Google Scholar 

  44. 44.

    Liu C, Li Y, Gao X (2015) Feature-based adaptive numerical control programming method for the environment of changing manufacturing resources. P I Mech Eng B-J Eng 13(5):237–247

    Google Scholar 

  45. 45.

    Zammit J, Gao J, Evans R (2016) Capturing and sharing product development knowledge using storytelling and video sharing, Procedia CIRP, CIRP Ann-Manuf Tech 56 (2016): 440–445.

  46. 46.

    Evans RD, Gao JX, Martin N, Simmonds C (2015) Exploring the benefits of using enterprise 2.0 tools to facilitate collaboration during product development. International journal of product lifecycle management, Inderscience Enterprises 8(3):233–252

    Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information



Corresponding author

Correspondence to James Gao.

Rights and permissions

Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Gao, J., Bernard, A. An overview of knowledge sharing in new product development. Int J Adv Manuf Technol 94, 1545–1550 (2018).

Download citation


  • Knowledge management
  • Knowledge sharing
  • New product development