Knowledge Management Practices in a Religious Organisation in South Africa


  • Chantall Cyster University of the Western Cape
  • Oghenere Salubi University of the Western Cape



Knowledge Management, Knowledge conversion, Knowledge sharing, Religious organisations, Pentecostal Church


Knowledge Management has developed over the years into a mainstream organisational necessity to achieve success and organisational effectiveness. Religious organisations are one of the most producers of knowledge. In many parts of Africa, several Pentecostal churches are established regularly, especially in crowded informal settlements. The knowledge conversion model was utilised to assess the knowledge management practices at a Pentecostal church in an informal settlement in Cape Town, South Africa. The objectives of the study were to examine the awareness and uptake of KM in the religious organisations, determine the level of openness of the members and leaders to knowledge sharing and conversion as well as assess how religious organisations leverage knowledge conversion and KM practices in achieving their goals in spreading the gospel and to enhance their community services. The church leadership and adult members of the church constituted the study population. The findings of this study revealed that the level of awareness and uptake of KM was very low because there was no documented training as well as responsible individuals responsible for the management of knowledge. Tacit knowledge is being shared informally through dialogue communication and religious meetings. However, this knowledge is not formally extracted, documented, or converted into explicit knowledge for organisational productivity, further sharing and future reuse. Although some of the leaders were not keen on knowing explicitly managed and shared in the organisation, religious members thought it is very important for knowledge to be documented and shared. Furthermore, as knowledge sharing is not prioritised within the organisation, the goal of spreading the gospel and to enhance their community services was found to be sluggish. The study developed a conceptual model for implementing knowledge management in Pentecostal religious organisations.