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Intellectual Capital - Patrick Sullivan history of IC - Hiroyuki Itami David Teece Karl-Erik Sveiby Sweden human knowledg...

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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 management movement. 


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 technology commercialization. 


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


Edvinsson, Corporate Longitude

Standfield, Intangible Management

Lev, Intangibles: Management, Measurement, and Reporting

Smith, Valuation of Intellectual Property and Intangible Assets



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