Abstract : Every knowledge management relies – willingly or unwillingly – on three components: organizational structures, communities of practice, and material settings. Those three components are both interdependent and resistant to each other, that is to say none of them can substitute another. In the perspective of improving an organization's knowledge management, this relationship suggests that emphasis should be put on the settings that reinforce both organizational control and the communities' autonomy. This is what Participative Document Spaces enable by facilitating access to the in vivo working of the different communities of practice. This relationship also allows understanding that putting in place such a setting implies to slightly modify the organizational structures as well as the practices of the communities.