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Internal versus External labour flexibility: The role of knowledge codification

  • Eve Caroli

    ()

    (EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris, EconomiX - CNRS : UMR7166 - Université Paris X - Paris Ouest Nanterre La Défense, PSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - CNRS : UMR8545 - École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) - École des Ponts ParisTech (ENPC) - École normale supérieure [ENS] - Paris)

This article uses a competence-based approach to the firm in order to analyse the recent destabilisation of internal labour markets. We argue that increasing knowledge codification made possible by the diffusion of information and communication technologies has made competences less dependent upon individuals. Knowledge has been increasingly embodied in firms themselves which has played an important role in lowering the relative cost of human resource management strategies based on external labour flexibility. As a consequence, recourse to external labour markets has developed, which may harm firms' innovative capabilities in the long run.

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Paper provided by HAL in its series PSE Working Papers with number halshs-00588315.

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Date of creation: Mar 2007
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Handle: RePEc:hal:psewpa:halshs-00588315
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  1. Eliasson, Gunnar, 1988. "The Firm as a Competent Team," Working Paper Series 207, Research Institute of Industrial Economics, revised Feb 1990.
  2. Cowan Robin & David Paul & Foray Dominique, 1999. "The Explicit Economics of Knowledge Codification and Tacitness," Research Memorandum 025, Maastricht University, Maastricht Economic Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
  3. Cohendet, Patrick, et al, 1999. "Knowledge Coordination, Competence Creation and Integrated Networks in Globalised Firms," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 23(2), pages 225-41, March.
  4. Robert G. Valletta, 1998. "Declining job security," Working Papers in Applied Economic Theory 98-02, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  5. Teece, David J, 1993. "The Dynamics of Industrial Capitalism: Perspectives on Alfred Chandler's Scale and Scope," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 31(1), pages 199-225, March.
  6. Geoff Mason & Karin Wagner, 1999. "Knowledge Transfer and Innovation in Germany and Britain: 'Intermediate Institution' Models of Knowledge Transfer under Strain?," Industry and Innovation, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 6(1), pages 85-109.
  7. Cowan,Robin, 2001. "Expert Systems: Aspects of and Limitations to the Codifiability of Knowledge," Research Memorandum 005, Maastricht University, Maastricht Economic Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
  8. Alfred D. Chandler, 1992. "Organizational Capabilities and the Economic History of the Industrial Enterprise," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 6(3), pages 79-100, Summer.
  9. Fabien Postel-Vinay & Luc Behaghel, 2003. "Insécurité de l'emploi : le rôle protecteur de l'ancienneté a-t-il baissé en France ? Suivi d'un commentaire de Fabien Postel-Vinay," Économie et Statistique, Programme National Persée, vol. 366(1), pages 3-29.
  10. Ancori, Bernard & Bureth, Antoine & Cohendet, Patrick, 2000. "The Economics of Knowledge: The Debate about Codification and and Tacit Knowledge," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 9(2), pages 255-87, June.
  11. Givord, Pauline & Maurin, Eric, 2004. "Changes in job security and their causes: An empirical analysis for France, 1982-2002," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 48(3), pages 595-615, June.
  12. Bj–rn Johnson & Edward Lorenz & Bengt-�ke Lundvall, 2002. "Why all this fuss about codified and tacit knowledge?," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 11(2), pages 245-262.
  13. Eliasson, Gunnar, 1990. "The firm as a competent team," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 13(3), pages 275-298, June.
  14. Mason, Geoff & Beltramo, Jean-Paul & Paul, Jean-Jacques, 2004. "External knowledge sourcing in different national settings: a comparison of electronics establishments in Britain and France," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 53-72, January.
  15. Cowan, Robin & Foray, Dominique, 1997. "The Economics of Codification and the Diffusion of Knowledge," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 6(3), pages 595-622, September.
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