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Asian and western Intellectual Capital in encounter

Rechten: Alle rechten voorbehouden

Asian and western Intellectual Capital in encounter

Rechten: Alle rechten voorbehouden

Samenvatting

The purpose of the paper is to start a dialogue about differences between Western and Eastern cultures in the way they conceptualize knowledge and discuss the implications of these differences for a global intellectual capital (IC) theory and practice. A systematic metaphor analysis of the concept of knowledge and IC is used to identify common Western conceptualizations of knowledge in IC literature. A review of philosophical and religious literature was done to identify knowledge conceptualizations in the main streams of Asian philosophy.
Fundamental differences were found in the way knowledge is conceptualized. In Western IC literature common metaphors for knowledge include knowledge as a thing and knowledge as capital. In Asian thought, knowledge is seen as unfolding truth based upon a unity of universe and human self and of knowledge and action.
The research was performed on a limited sample of literature. More research is needed to identify how knowledge is conceptualized in the practice of doing business in Asia and to test the effects of introducing IC theories to Asian businessmen and managers. Moreover, it might be questionable whether different types of resources (Western management literature on IC and Asian cultural philosophies) can be put in a comparative perspective to extract conclusions out of it. This methodological starting point has its confinements, but is plausible partly as long as IC theories originating from an Asian background are still missing, partly as far as philosophical notions within Western IC publications are contrasted with Asian notions of knowledge. Despite this restriction we would like to emphasize that Western conceptualizations of knowledge, embedded in terms like intellectual capital and knowledge management, can not be transferred to Asian business without considering the local view on knowledge. Asian conceptualizations of knowledge should play an important role in the further development of a knowledge-based theory and practice of the firm.
We choose deliberately to contrast Western philosophy with cultural and religious connotations in Asian philosophy, as the underlying paradigm is strongly influenced by these notions. This is clearly perceivable in revivalist and reformist tendencies in Buddhism, Hinduism and Islam. Religious notions within these traditions have a strong paradigmatic function in a cognitive and normative sense. Not only in anthropology but also in epistemology, contemporary Asian thought is dominated by a discourse deeply embedded in religious and cultural traditions, in which the dimensions of 'nature', 'subjectivity' and 'history' have well defined boundaries. Anthropologically and epistemologically, all spheres of human reality are analyzed and described within the perspective of an integral and monolithic unity, in which all dimensions and spheres of being are bound. In Western philosophy these spheres of being have been separated from religious notions because of a longstanding secularization due to which religion and culture, metaphysics and philosophy have become separate disciplines.(Boom, 1993)

Toon meer
OrganisatieHogeschool Inholland
Opleiding
Instituut
LectoraatIntellectual Capital
Gepubliceerd inPaper presented at the IC Congress 2007, INHolland University, Haarlem
Datum2007-05-03
TypeConferentiebijdrage
TaalEngels

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