Language and Linguistics

Difference between implicit and explicit knowledge

Explicit knowledge

Explicit knowledge is knowledge gained through codified written documents. This type of knowledge can be easily stored and transferred from one place to another and from one person to another. This knowledge is easily obtained from the media, and encyclopedias provide interesting examples of this kind of knowledge. The problem with explicit knowledge is storing it and updating it so that it is available to everyone when they need it. In this article we will describe the difference between implicit and explicit knowledge

Implicit knowledge

Implicit knowledge is the opposite of formal or systematic knowledge. You cannot easily convey this to another person by writing or using words. The ability to use complex computer language or the ability to use complex equipment is the knowledge that is not recorded or encoded. Through contact and interaction, tacit knowledge can be passed on to other people. If you know how to ride a bike or swim, you cannot verbally tell the other person how to do it. Only through physical exercise can you teach another person to ride a bike or swim.

Major Differences 

  1. Implicit knowledge is stored in memory and is difficult to convey to others through oral words or writing.
  2. Explicit knowledge is the knowledge that is formal, codified or recorded so that it can be easily stored and passed on to others.
  3. Explicit knowledge has a transmission mechanism, while implicit knowledge does not.
  4. Swimming or cycling is an example of tacit knowledge that cannot be taught or communicated through written words or conversations.
  5. Documents, logs, procedures, etc. are examples of explicit knowledge.
  6. Explicit knowledge can be codified (for example, ‘can you write it down’ or ‘put it into words‘ or ‘draw a picture’), and easily transferred without the knowing subject. In contrast, tacit knowledge is intuitive and unarticulated knowledge that cannot be communicated, understood or used without the ‘knowing subject‘. Unlike the transfer of explicit knowledge, the transfer of tacit knowledge requires close interaction and the buildup of shared understanding and trust among them.
  7. Explicit knowledge can be generated through logical deduction and acquired through practical experience in the relevant context. In contrast, tacit knowledge can only be acquired through practical experience in the relevant context. Difference between implicit and explicit knowledge
  8. Explicit knowledge can be aggregated at a single location, stored in objective forms, and appropriated without the participation of the knowing subject. Tacit knowledge, in contrast, is personal and contextual; it is distributed across knowing subjects, and cannot easily be aggregated. The realization of its full potential requires the close involvement and cooperation of the knowing subject.

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