Steenkamp, N & Kashyap, V 2010, ‘Importance and contribution of intangible assets: SME managers’ perceptions’, Journal of Intellectual Capital, vol. 11, no. 3, pp. 368 – 390.
This paper aims to empirically prove the importance of intellectual capital in small and medium enterprises (SMEs). The research covers New Zealand SMEs and analyses the role of intangible assets in the local businesses. The results of the investigation prove the significance of intellectual capital for the success of the SMEs, outlining particularly such its components as customer satisfaction, customer loyalty, corporate reputation, product reputation, employee know-how, etc. The paper might be useful due to its identification of intellectual capital management as a significant business driver, as well as identification of intangible assets in general.
Like Hussi (2004), Steenkamp and Kashyap (2010) draw out 3 levels of intellectual capital importance – human, external and internal capital.
In this connection, for system analysis of pragmatic aspects of a firm’s intellectual capital the authors take the development of epistemological and ontological models of the system “intellectual capital – results generation – value” and its subsystems, which take into account the stochastic nature of processes occurring in the firm and the external environment and determine the efficiency of production. Therefore, the idealized object of the theory of the knowledge-based company is the system “intellectual capital – results generation – value”, and its object of research is the generation of profits and the reproduction of the company’s intellectual capital.
In general, the lack of intellectual capital factor in the company’s theory reduces the adequacy and cognitive value of microeconomic models adopted on its basis. Consequently, in neo-economic conditions scientific knowledge gets a binary representation: epistemological one as a methodological tool-box of the company’s theory and ontological one as a production factor. In the epistemological aspect of the firm logical models of economic processes shaped within the theory of the firm are represented. Methodological basis of studies of ontology and epistemology of the firm consists of concepts of economic science, developing in its classical, institutional and evolutionary theories (Bontis et al. 1999; Rylander & Peppard 2003; Sullivan 2000).
Rylander, A & Peppard, J 2003, ‘From implementing strategy to embodying strategy: linking strategy, identity and intellectual capital’, Journal of Intellectual Capital, vol. 4, no. 3, pp. 316-31.
The authors state that human resources and intangible assets are the most essential resources for modern knowledge-based companies. Crafting strategies are gradually moving down in the rating of the tools that lead the company to success. The paper suggests that intellectual capital provides the way to implementation of vision- and values-based strategy in the company’s resources. The authors also introduce and analyze the specific strategy that integrates intellectual capital, strategy and identity, arguing that it is more relevant for knowledge-based companies operating in current competing environments.
According to Rylander & Peppard (2003), the increase of a company’s market value occurs due to the growth of liquidity of its tangible and intangible assets and yield. Competitive potential is an attribute the growth of which is accompanied by obtaining of other forms of value. This paper considers competitiveness as an independent form of value in the strategic decision-making situations where other forms of value are less pronounced in the results of economic activity.
Thus, the analysis of the structure of forms of value generated by intellectual capital allows the authors to use another taxonometric feature of binary classification of the forms of results of intellectual capital application – quality. Benefit quality can be either positive or negative (the latter include opportunistic costs). However, we can clearly see that opportunistic behavior of economic agents may decrease profits and market value of the firm. Therefore, the opportunistic nature of costs has become the object of epistemological and ontological studies of intellectual capital (Bontis et al 1999; Sveiby 1997; Edvinsson & Malone 1997).
Bontis, N, Dragonetti, NC, Jacobsen, K, & Roos, G 1999, ‘The knowledge toolbox: a review of the tools available to measure and manage intangible resources’, European Management Journal, vol. 17, no. 4, pp. 391-402.
The authors of the paper collect and analyze the most important methods and strategies of intangible assets management referred to as the knowledge toolbox. This analysis includes four most popular measurement systems: human resource accounting; economic value added; balanced scorecard; intellectual capital. The article contains thorough analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of such systems in order to improve their understanding among modern companies’ managers.
The author seem to be consequent in their detailed analysis of each method and generally conclude that each particular company – taking into account the specificity of its activities and organizational construction – may independently determine its own system of indicators for the calculation of intellectual capacity and determination of a development strategy. In the interests of the company, in the aim of company’s sustainable development and, sometimes, in order to survive in the contemporary market, the company should be able to evaluate its own potential, and in the first place, intellectual potential, as well as to measure its opportunities in relation to the needs of the market.
Ontological structure of corporate knowledge is determined by the practical context of its application. Complex multilevel structure of corporate knowledge has necessitated the use of taxonomy for the classification and systematization of its elements. The following attributes of corporate knowledge are considered as taxonometric features: context ( includes joint group of basic scientific knowledge, methodologies and techniques: general science, and mathematical and economic, technological and system knowledge); goal ( includes special technological and economic knowledge, as well as supplemental information used in manufacturing processes and obtaining concrete results); level (includes the knowledge needed to address the strategic, operational and everyday problems of production).
Comparison of theoretical models describing semantic and the economic nature of the new values generated by intellectual capital (Edvinsson & Malone 1997) with the practical intellectual factors (Roos & Roos 1997) helps form the system reflecting the structural relationship between these subsystems.
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