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1 March 2019
Anat Drucker
abstract graphs

A concept is the literal form of our perception of reality. A concept is a definition of a number of elements collectively, through the scope of a contextualized, describable common denominator.

Conceptualization is the process in which we name or express in words a concept. By naming an idea, phenomenon and definition transform the idea into something tangible; into a reality. Conceptualization can be both the process and the product. The conceptualization process allows us to merge the theoretical knowledge and the practical knowledge into a new form of knowledge.

In music, conceptualization is performed directly. Composers transform their internal, tacit understanding of an assortment of sounds and notes into something explicit and overt: a tune. Similarly, a dance is a conceptualization through its steps and moves.


A conceptualization can change our perspective. For example, the concept of "gravity" may not change the way we are drawn to the earth, yet it definitely affects our perspective, understanding, and possibly our focus, on certain aspects of gravity.


In the field of Knowledge Management, two main areas involve conceptualization:

  1. Knowledge Extraction: transforming tacit knowledge into explicit, expressible knowledge.

  2. Clarification: of a known term, giving it a certain meaning.

When we wish to describe a certain notion, we use conceptualization.

We can use other means to conceptualize an idea. An idea can be conceptualized graphically, using pictures, infographics, videos, flowcharts, etc. These can be attractive means for effectively illustrating the concept.


Hereby is an example, excerpted from 'Presentation Zen Design' by Garr Reynolds (2009). This picture bluntly illustrates the meaning and emphasizes the message of a drop in sales. It is far more effective than any graph.

In conclusion, conceptualization allows us to describe and illustrate a certain meaning clearly and precisely.

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