The purpose of this brief introductory editorial is to introduce the background and rationale to the special issue, “Intellectual capital: becoming critical”. This is based on a selection of papers presented at the 1st Intellectual Capital (IC) Stream at the 4th International Critical Management Studies Conference at Cambridge University, UK, in July 2005.
Critical management studies (CMS) is not just about theory but demands action; its purpose is to make a difference for the better. Following an introduction to the idea of what “critical management studies” (CMS) entails the main ideas of the seven papers selected are then presented. Each paper is accompanied by a commentary from leading authors in the IC and knowledge management (KM) fields.
Key themes emergent in this “critical” issue include a decisive turn to language, uncertainty and risk, not‐knowing, ambiguity and complexity, scepticism towards simplistic mechanistic models, ownership rights, and the dynamics of situated IC practice. The conclusion reached is that there is much that further work from a CMS perspective can contribute to the IC field.
This special issue is one of the first applications of critical management thinking to the intellectual capital field.
O'Donnell, D., Bo Henriksen, L. and Voelpel, S.C. (2006), "Guest editorial: Becoming critical on intellectual capital", Journal of Intellectual Capital, Vol. 7 No. 1, pp. 5-11. https://doi.org/10.1108/14691930610639732Download as .RIS
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