Academic journal article Management Revue

Knowledge and Social Capital

Academic journal article Management Revue

Knowledge and Social Capital

Article excerpt

Lesser, Eric L. (ed.)

Knowledge and Social Capital

Butterworth-Heinemann, Boston et al. 2000, EUR 25,89

Social and intellectual capital - at the beginning of the debate usually referred to as human capital - are popular concepts of organizational research both inside and outside of the discipline. The editor of the reviewed volume even sees them as resources of knowledge based economics. Indeed, economic change - and closely connected to it - organizational change are responsible for the growing interest in the concepts. But their conceptional status is weak. Additionally they are based on a wide variety of theoretical grounds and evoke many and different associations. Therefore it can be considered a question of time until social and intellectual capital become hollow formulas in the realm of organizational myths and fashions. The more it deserves attention, that the reviewed volume is edited by a practician of knowledge management thereby encompassing theoretical foundations, applications and empirical studies.

The volume contains the classic article "Social Capital in the Creation of Human Capital" by Coleman as well as Sandefur's and Laumann's "Paradigm for Social Capital". Less often citet but advisable as well are Portes' contribution on the origin and usage of the concept of social capital in modern sociology and Adler's and Kwon's essay "Social Capital: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly".

The gathered applications discuss social and intellectual capital in the sense of organizational or competitive advantages (Nahapiet/Ghosal), as virtual communities (Blanchard/Horan), relationships in Silicon Valley (Cohen/Fields) and self-control centered problems (Arnold/Kay). …

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