As we move from the industrial age to the information age, the key to the competitive success of organizations becomes the application and development of specialized knowledge and competencies. Based on research and practice, Managing Knowledge addresses a wide area of issues concerning knowledge management, ranging from knowledge transfer and developments between organizations, to knowledge management within organizations. Divided into two parts, this volume reflects a fundamental conceptual distinction between two worldviews. The first part contains chapters characterized by “representationism,” or traditional approaches to viewing knowledge transfer and cooperative strategies; the second part comprises chapters characterized by “antirepresentationism,” or new perspectives on knowledge and knowledge transfer in organizational cooperation. Contrasting established approaches with new thinking on knowledge as an organizational resource, Managing Knowledge will be important and stimulating reading for academics and students in strategic management and general management studies.
Chapter 2: Imitation of Knowledge: A Sociology of Knowledge Perspective
Imitation of Knowledge: A Sociology of Knowledge Perspective
The firm's competitive advantage represents its raison d'être. Therefore, an understanding of the basis for competitive advantage is the core of the strategic management field. A firm is said to have a competitive advantage when it implements a strategy that is not being simultaneously implemented by other competing firms (Barney, 1986; Porter, 1985). What a firm can do to create competitive advantage is a function not simply of the opportunities in the environment (industry) but also of what knowledge the firm can accumulate and the resources that it can assemble (Barney, 1991; Penrose, 1958; Wernerfelt. 1984).1 or even of plain luck (Barney, 1986). However, because one firm's ...