Knowledge Management systems in South African law firms

[German title: Wissensmanagement-Systeme in südafrikanischen Anwaltskanzleien]

Knowledge management and legal practice
T. du Plessis and A.S.A. du Toit
International Journal of Information Management
Volume 26, Issue 5 , October 2006, Pages 360-371

Abstract: In the practice of law the products and applications of information and communication technologies, such as intranet infrastructures; document, content and case management systems; workflow management systems; artificial intelligence technologies; and business intelligence tools are becoming increasingly important means of communication, of information distribution, and of sharing knowledge. This article examines the degree of impact the changing legal information environment has on the legal research process and to find out what benefit legal research will gain from information and knowledge management. It looks into the process of electronic or digital legal research and seeks answers to some questions with regard to the skills that lawyers, who are successful legal researchers in the print information environment, possibly will need to also be successful researchers in a digital information environment. It also reports the results of an empirical, explorative study identifying the extent as well as some barriers and concerns with regard to the utilisation of KM systems in South African law firms.

Keywords: Knowledge management; Law firms; Legal practice; Legal research; Law libraries

Read the article online.

© 2006 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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