A framework for human capital indicators in knowledge- based industries: evidence from pharmaceutical industry

Gholamhossein Mehralian (based at School of Pharmacy, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran)
Peyman Akhavan (based at Iran University of Science and Technology, Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran)
Hamid Reza Rasekh (based at the School of Pharmacy, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran)
Ali Rajabzadeh Ghatari (based at Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran)

Measuring Business Excellence

ISSN: 1368-3047

Publication date: 11 November 2013

Abstract

Purpose

During the last decade, intellectual capital (IC) has been widely considered as a critical tool to deliver successful business in an intensive knowledge environment. The main goal of this paper is therefore to develop and prioritize human capital indicators as an important component of IC in knowledge-based industries.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on an extensive literature review, a valid and reliable questionnaire was designed. In order to gather data, it was sent out to 108 participants from academia and universities who were well qualified in pharmaceutical practice. Besides statistical analysis, the authors also used fuzzy TOPSIS technique as a MADM model in order to extract prioritization of indicators.

Findings

The analysis indicates that there is little difference between academic and university respondents. Furthermore, the fuzzy TOPSIS results show that participants have high concerns especially about knowledge and skills of managers and employees.

Research limitations/implications

The findings offer valuable insights in evaluating the state of human capital state as a key component of IC in knowledge- based industry.

Practical implications

There is an immediate need that the policy makers and corporate managers wake up to the need and start to measure and disclose the intangible assets of firms. Intellectual capital measurement is also of primary interest for top executives of pharmaceutical firms in Iran.

Originality/value

This is an initial and pioneering study to develop a valid tool to evaluate IC in the Iranian pharmaceutical industry. The present study provides a new aspect of performance measurement for research-based industries in emerging economies and would be a good topic for further research.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

Dr Gholamhossein Mehralian received his PhD in Pharma Management and Pharmacoeconomics from School of Pharmacy, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Iran, and this paper is based on a part of his PhD dissertation.

Citation

Mehralian, G., Akhavan, P., Reza Rasekh, H. and Rajabzadeh Ghatari, A. (2013), "A framework for human capital indicators in knowledge- based industries: evidence from pharmaceutical industry", Measuring Business Excellence, Vol. 17 No. 4, pp. 88-101. https://doi.org/10.1108/MBE-10-2012-0053

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Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2013, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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