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Glossary of terms used in competitive intelligence and knowledge management  

By Vernon Prior

NB: Entries marked with an * are new or modified entries with effect from 12 July 2009

A - B - C - D - E - F - G - H - I - J - K - L - M - N - O - P / Q - R - S - T - U - V - W / X / Y/ Z


Value chain comprises all the activities an organisation needs to undertake in order to create or add value to its products or services.  It includes design, production, marketing, delivery, and customer support.  Alternatively, a value chain consists of a group of enterprises cooperating to progressively add value to a product or suite of products in response to market opportunities.  See also: Cluster, Value chain analysis, Value chain management

Value chain analysis is used to identify potential sources of a company's economic advantage in its industry.  The Analysis examines the firm's major activities in order to understand the behaviour of costs, the associated value added, and the existing and potential sources of differentiation. Major activities are those associated with products, services, and processes, such as Customer relationship management and MarketingCompetitive advantage is gained by performing some or all of the activities at a lower cost or with greater levels of differentiation than competitors. 

Value chain management involves actively managing a Value chain to achieve efficiencies and expand capacity in order to increase Market share.   It usually results in any or all of the following: lower costs of doing business, reduced lead times, enhanced products or services, reduced inventory or stock holdings. 

Vapourware applies to the deliberate and premature announcement of a product before it is ready for the Market in an attempt to discourage potential customers from considering the purchase of similar, competitors' products.  Mainly applicable to software, it is a form of Disinformation

Vector space modelling is a profiling and matching technique (a form of Selective dissemination of information) that depends upon the frequency of occurrence of words in a sample Document.  When processed, this document forms the basis of a profile that is then used to gather matching items.  Vector space modelling is more often employed in a scientific context, rather than in business; the latter presenting a fuzzier problem. 

Venn diagram is a graphical representation of Boolean operators in which relationships are usually depicted in the form of overlapping circles.  See also: Boolean algebra

Venture capital refers to equity investment in an unlisted business offered free of collateral to an entrepreneurial enterprise having potential for high returns over the medium to long term (two to seven years).  See also: Entrepreneur, Intrapreneur

Venture management involves Innovation management together with some form of capital investment, either financial or (more usually) by a combination of time, effort, and expertise.  Its aim is to encourage entrepreneurial activity by reducing areas of uncertainty in the establishment of an enterprise.  See also: Entrepreneur, Innovation, Intrapreneur, Venture capital

Very high-performance Backbone Network Service (vBNS) is a high-performance Network, developed by NASA and the US National Science Foundation, designed to supplement the World Wide Web

Video conferencing provides real time video and voice communication between terminals, usually employing dedicated systems in a Conference room setting.  Video conferencing may also be accomplished by using a webcam and personal computer, when it is usually known as Desktop conferencing

Virtual competition, see War gaming

Virtual organisation is one in which members are geographically separated but who work together through online communications.  See also: Networking

Virus is a small program that can be transferred into a computer system and adversely affect the operation of that computer. It can also be propagated by passing from computer to computer, not unlike a biological virus, by way of networks, emails, or on a contaminated storage device.  A virus attaches itself to an existing program and runs with that program, causing whatever problem it is designed to introduce.  See also: Corporate security, Electronic mail, Network, Trojan, Worm

Vision statement describes a desirable state that a company wishes to attain at some time in the future.  Elements of mission and vision statements may be combined to describe a companys purposes, goals, aspirations, and values. See also: Corporate culture, Meme, Mission statement, Strategy

Visual information analysis, see Visualisation

*Visualisation of information is a technique for making visual representations of the topics or ideas contained in a body of Information, and of their relationships with each other.  It usually takes the form of a map or other graphical depiction that can be readily understood and manipulated.  Visualisation expands the capacity of the human mind to deal with complex matters, enables users to extract Knowledge more efficiently, and helps them to find insights not always obvious when information is presented in traditional formats.  Other terms used include: Argument mapping, Concept mapping, Content visualisation, Graphic visualisation, and Visual information analysis.  See also: Computer graphics, Content management, Dashboard, Knowledge map, Mind maps, Predictive analytics, Social network analysis, Sonification, Topic maps

Voicemail offers a means of electronically sending, receiving, and storing voice-based messages. 

Vortal, an abbreviation of vertical portal, is a subject-specific Directory or Database, as opposed to the more generic Portal.  Vortals are usually created by academics, researchers, experts, government agencies and other subject specialists; hence the material is usually of a higher quality than that found through general Search engine sites. 



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Status: 01. Juli 2015