Patrick H. Sullivan - A Brief History of the
Intellectual Capital Movement
Short article giving a
good overview of the early days of intellectual capital thinking.
The evolution of intellectual capital management as a discipline followed a pattern that is
detectable in hindsight, although to the people involved at the beginning
there was no pattern discernible at the time.
There were three
distinctly different origins of what has become the intellectual capital
The first was in Japan with the groundbreaking
work of Hiroyuki Itarni, who studied the effect of invisible assets on the
management of Japanese corporations.
The second was the Work of a
disparate set of economists seeking a different view or theory of the firm.
The views of these economists (Penrose, Rumelt, Wemerfelt, and others) were
coalesced by David Teece of UC Berkeley in a seminal 1986 article on
Finally, the work of Karl-Erik Sveiby in
Sweden, published originally in Swedish, addressed the human capital
dimension of intellectual capital and, in so doing, provided a rich and
tantalizing view of the potential for valuing the enterprise based upon the
competences and knowledge of its employees.
Recommended Books on Intellectual Capital
Measurement, and Reporting
Valuation of Intellectual
Property and Intangible Assets