Dean, A. and Kretschmer, M., 2007. Can ideas be capital? Factors of production in the post-industrial economy: a review and critique. Academy of Management Review, 32 (2), pp. 573-594.
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It is a widely accepted premise that we are in the midst of a radical change of economic and social relations, associated with terms such as the “knowledge economy”, “weightless economy”, “post-industrial society” or “information society”. The intellectual capital literature appears to suggest the arrival of a distinct factor of production, replacing or supplementing land, labour and capital. Some exponents of intellectual capital analysis see knowledge, ideas, capabilities and skills as a new, perhaps overriding productive factor; others conceive of the changes within a widening of the traditional definition of capital to include business processes, intellectual property, product ideas, even customer loyalty; again others use “intellectual capital” as a rhetorical tool withholding any coherent definition. In this article, we first give an historically informed theoretical exposition of capital as the durable result of past production processes, transforming future production while not being transformed itself, and associated with a particular economic actor. Second, we construct from recent literature a taxonomy of the perceived characteristics and location of intellectual capital in the production process. Third, we offer a choice: (i) a definitional breakpoint has been reached, constraining the usefulness of the application of the economic concept of capital to ideas and knowledge; (ii) a conscious departure to a new understanding of production processes is required, placing “intellectual capital” in a tradition of hybrid concepts such as “human capital” and “social capital”.
|Additional Information:||Pre-print Academy of Management Review April 2007|
|Subjects:||Social Sciences > Law|
|Group:||Business School > Department of Law|
|Deposited By:||INVALID USER|
|Deposited On:||11 Dec 2007|
|Last Modified:||07 Mar 2013 14:40|
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