Interesting Body of Knowledge Discussion

Scott Francis
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Alberto Manuel argues against the idea of a process body of knowledge on his blog.  The basic themes seem to be:
  • frustration with overly-complicated standards
  • concern about standardizing a book of knowledge before the area is mature enough
  • enforcement of immature “standards”.
The general responses are along the lines that this is an education, rather than an “enforcement” effort.  I think if the PBoK had been characterized instead as a process wiki, perhaps the connotations would be more “open” and sound less like an effort to put the stamp of approval on only certain things (and, in time, connotations won’t matter as much as reality).  In fact, wikipedia remains one of the best places to go for process-information (because they often have clear attribution, or acknowledgment of the lack thereof when they don’t have the references). There’s always a tension between those that want to document the work we do (or capture it in process), and those who are already expert in that work – who find the act of defining to be too constraining. They’ll feel that the constraints are too much – and that if you lived by the constraints, you could never make the correct human judgments that they are able to make because of the wealth of experience they have. I fully sympathize with both view points – there just isn’t as much conflict between the two as people might think.  Nothing the BoK will do will prevent Alberto from exercising his expertise.  Hopefuly the concerns of folks like Alberto are addressed by the PBoK team by keeping access (and editing) of the information open to a wide community.

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