The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) fund the AKT project. It is one of their Interdisciplinary Research Collaborations (IRC). AKT brings together a strong set of universities and complementary disciplines to tackle fundamental problems associated with the management of knowledge. AKT is a multi-million pound, six-year collaboration between internationally recognised research groups at the Universities of Southampton, Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Sheffield and the Open University.
Professor Nigel Shadbolt will be the Director of the AKT project whose aim is to develop and extend a range of technologies to provide integrated methods and services for the capture, modelling, publishing, reuse and management of knowledge. The IRC will undertake fundamental research in particular knowledge technologies and it will also bring together relevant work and produce practical results. It has attracted significant and enthusiastic industrial support. We believe it provides an exciting focus for research into knowledge technology.
It is a commonly held belief that we live in a world where there has been an explosion of data, information and knowledge. But knowledge is only of value when it can be used effectively and efficiently. The management of knowledge is increasingly being recognised as a key element in extracting its value. We need to understand how best to take knowledge through a series of stages from its creation to its use. It needs to be acquired, modelled and represented, stored and retrieved, used and reused, published and maintained.
The AKT project is intended to address all these closely related issues in an integrated approach. There are six challenges that any complete approach to knowledge management must meet. We see these as fundamental bottlenecks that need to be overcome and around which AKT's research agenda is focused.