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Intellectual Capital Profiles: An Examination of Investments and Returns


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  • Mark A. Youndt
  • ohan Subramaniam
  • Scott A. Snell
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    Using data collected from executives in 208 organizations, this study takes a configurational approach to examine how human, social, and organizational capital coexist to form distinct intellectual capital profiles across organizations. We then examine how investments in human resource management (HRM), information technology (IT), and research and development (R&D) differ across these intellectual capital profiles and investigate differences in financial returns and Tobin's q between the profiles. Results indicate that a relatively small group of superior performing organizations exhibit high levels of human, social, and organizational capital. Most firms, however, tend to focus primarily on only one form of intellectual capital, and a small group of underperforming organizations have very low levels of all three types of intellectual capital. At a general level, HRM and IT investments appear to influence intellectual capital development more than R&D investments. More specifically, HRM investments tend to be higher in firms with profiles high in human and social capital, while IT investments are stronger in firms with profiles high in social capital. Further, HRM, IT, and R&D investments are all very high in the group of superior performing organizations that have high levels of human, social, and organizational capital. Copyright Blackwell Publishing Ltd 2004.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Journal of Management Studies.

    Volume (Year): 41 (2004)
    Issue (Month): 2 (03)
    Pages: 335-361

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    Handle: RePEc:bla:jomstd:v:41:y:2004:i:2:p:335-361

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    Cited by:
    1. Godfred Adjapong Afrifa, 2013. "Working Capital Management Practices of UK SMEs: The Role of Education and Experience," International Journal of Academic Research in Accounting, Finance and Management Sciences, Human Resource Management Academic Research Society, International Journal of Academic Research in Accounting, Finance and Management Sciences, vol. 3(4), pages 185-196, October.
    2. N. Soens & D. Buyens & M. S. Taylor, 2012. "First-line Implementation of High-Performance Work Systems: Effects on Work Unit Human Capital, Empowerment, and Performance," Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium 12/783, Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration.
    3. Hwan-Yann Su, 2014. "Business Ethics and the Development of Intellectual Capital," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 119(1), pages 87-98, January.
    4. Chuang, Chih-Hsun & Chen, Shyh-jer & Chuang, Ching-Wen, 2013. "Human resource management practices and organizational social capital: The role of industrial characteristics," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 66(5), pages 678-687.
    5. Mudambi, Ram & Swift, Tim, 2009. "Professional guilds, tension and knowledge management," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(5), pages 736-745, June.
    6. Roth,Felix & Thum, Anna-Elisabeth, 2010. "Does intangible capital affect economic growth?," CEPS Papers 3667, Centre for European Policy Studies.
    7. Manuela Presutti & Cristina Boari & Antonio Majocchi, 2013. "Inter-organizational geographical proximity and local start-ups' knowledge acquisition: a contingency approach," Entrepreneurship & Regional Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 25(5-6), pages 446-467, June.
    8. Passetti, Emilio & Tenucci, Andrea & Cinquini, Lino & Frey, Marco, 2009. "Intellectual capital communication: evidence from social and sustainability reporting," MPRA Paper 16589, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Leitão, João & Franco, Mário, 2008. "Individual Entrepreneurship Capacity and Performance of SMEs," MPRA Paper 8179, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 09 Apr 2008.
    10. Ya-Hui Ling, 2013. "The influence of intellectual capital on organizational performance—Knowledge management as moderator," Asia Pacific Journal of Management, Springer, vol. 30(3), pages 937-964, September.
    11. Verbic, Miroslav & Polanec, Sašo, 2011. "Innovativeness and intangibles in transition: the case of Slovenia," MPRA Paper 32127, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    12. Marina A. Oskolkova & Petr A. Parshakov, 2013. "Company intangibles: creation vs absorption," HSE Working papers WP BRP 25/FE/2013, National Research University Higher School of Economics.
    13. Robert Isaac & Irene Herremans & Theresa Kline, 2010. "Intellectual Capital Management Enablers: A Structural Equation Modeling Analysis," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 93(3), pages 373-391, May.
    14. Colakoglu, Saba & Yamao, Sachiko & Lepak, David P., 2014. "Knowledge creation capability in MNC subsidiaries: Examining the roles of global and local knowledge inflows and subsidiary knowledge stocks," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 91-101.
    15. Effelsberg, Martin, 2011. "Wissenstransfer in Innovationskooperationen: Ergebnisse einer Literaturstudie zur "Absorptive Capacity"," Arbeitspapiere 107, Westfälsche Wilhelms-Universität Münster (WWU), Institut für Genossenschaftswesen.
    16. Lei Li & Zhiang Lin & Bindu Arya, 2008. "The turtle–hare race story revisited: Social capital and resource accumulation for firms from emerging economies," Asia Pacific Journal of Management, Springer, vol. 25(2), pages 251-275, June.
    17. Subramaniam, Mohan & Watson, Sharon, 2006. "How interdependence affects subsidiary performance," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 59(8), pages 916-924, August.


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