What is a wonk?


When Jerry Ashe, among other things editor of the Inside knowledge magazine, commented on ‘Our mission’ on this blog, he said that he was involved in ‘reaching beyond the small island of KM wonks….’ This puzzled me. Do you know what a wonk is? I certainly didn’t, so I looked it up…

According to Wordsmith, a wonk is ‘an expert who studies a subject or issue thoroughly and excessively…’

 And I quote:

This word is most often encountered in the term policy wonk. There are many speculations about the origin of the word, for example an acronym for WithOut Normal Knowledge, or the reverse spelling of the word know, but these claims are not supported by evidence…

One Response

  1. dear Sarah,
    This sounds very interesting. Including the blip tv excerpt. Do you have a copy of the paper you can send to me by any chance? Now dar es salaam talking of the revival of Tanzania Library Services?
    warm regards,

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