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Knowledge AssetsSecuring Competitive Advantage in the Information Economy$
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Max H. Boisot

Print publication date: 1999

Print ISBN-13: 9780198296072

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198296072.001.0001

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Culture as a Knowledge Asset

Culture as a Knowledge Asset

(p.117) 6 Culture as a Knowledge Asset
Knowledge Assets

Max H. Boisot

Oxford University Press

Culture works at many levels of aggregation. The culture of a group, firm, industry or profession; of a region; and of a country, can be discussed. Yet at whatever level is chosen to define it – national, regional, industrial, or corporate – culture remains the means by which non-genetic information is communicated, either within a given generation of agents or from one generation to the next. Technological practice forms an essential part of such cultural transmission. But technological practice frequently combines theoretical knowledge that may itself be pretty well universal in scope with more practical knowledge that is often much more local and culture specific in its application. Knowledge assets not only differ in the discretion they allow when applied, but also in how that discretion is interpreted. The discretion available is a function of the degrees of freedom that characterize a knowledge asset.

Keywords:   culture, knowledge asset, technological practice, cultural transmission, theoretical knowledge, practical knowledge

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