nep-knm New Economics Papers
on Knowledge Management and Knowledge Economy
Issue of 2006‒11‒25
twelve papers chosen by
Emanuele Canegrati
Catholic University of the Sacred Heart

  1. "When Knowledge is an Asset: Explaining the Organizational Structure of Large Law Firms" By James B. Rebitzer; Lowell J. Taylor
  2. Transfer of Metacognitive Skills and Hint Seeking in Monkeys By Nate Kornell; Lisa K Son; Herbert S. Terrace
  3. Information and communications technology as a general-purpose technology: evidence from U.S industry data By Susanto Basu; John Fernald
  4. What Drives Media Slant? Evidence from U.S. Daily Newspapers By Matthew Gentzkow; Jesse M. Shapiro
  5. The Aggregate Labor Market Effects of the Swedish Knowledge Lift Program By James Albrecht; Gerard J. van den Berg; Susan Vroman
  6. Instruments of Commerce and Knowledge: Probe Microscopy, 1980-2000 By Cyrus C. M. Mody
  7. Managerial learning from on-the-job experiences: An integrative framework to guide future research By K. WOUTERS; D. BUYENS
  8. What can we do with the Research Institute for Social Complexity Sciences in Indonesia? By Situngkir, Hokky
  9. A Psychology of Emotional Legal Decision Making: Revulsion and Saving Face in Legal Theory and Practice By Peter H Huang; Christopher J Anderson
  10. Does Science Promote Women? Evidence from Academia 1973-2001 By Donna K. Ginther; Shulamit Kahn
  11. Rationalizable Expectations By Elchanan Ben-Porath; Aviad Heifetz
  12. The patenting universities: Problems and perils By Baldini, Nicola

  1. By: James B. Rebitzer; Lowell J. Taylor
    Abstract: We study the economics of employment relationships through theoretical and empirical analyses of an unusual set of firms, large law firms. Our point of departure is the Òproperty rightsÓ approach that emphasizes the centrality of ownershipÕs legal rights to control important, nonhuman assets of the enterprise. From this perspective, large law firms are an interesting and potentially important object of study, because the most valuable assets of these firms take the form of knowledgeÑparticularly knowledge of the needs and interests of clients. We argue that the two most distinctive organizational features of large law firms, the use of Òup or outÓ promotion contests and the practice of having winners become residual claimants in the firm, emerge naturally in this setting. In addition to explaining otherwise anomalous features of the up-or-out partnership system, this paper suggests a general framework for analyzing organizations where assets reside in the brains of employees.
    Date: 2006–10
  2. By: Nate Kornell (University of California, Los Angeles); Lisa K Son (Barnard College); Herbert S. Terrace (Columbia University)
    Abstract: Metacognition is knowledge that can be expressed as confidence judgments about what we know (monitoring) and by strategies for learning what we don’t know (control). Although a substantial literature exists on cognitive processes in animals, little is known about their metacognitive abilities. Here we show that rhesus macaques, trained previously to make retrospective confidence judgments about their performance on perceptual tasks, transferred that ability immediately to a new perceptual task and to a working memory task. In a second experiment we show that monkeys can also learn to request “hints” when they are given problems that they would otherwise have to solve by trial and error. This shows, for the first time, that non-human primates share with humans the ability to monitor and transfer their metacognitive ability both within and between different cognitive tasks, and to seek new knowledge on a need to know basis.
    Date: 2006–04
  3. By: Susanto Basu; John Fernald
    Abstract: Many people point to information and communications technology (ICT) as the key for understanding the acceleration in productivity in the United States since the mid-1990s. Stories of ICT as a 'general purpose technology' suggest that measured TFP should rise in ICT-using sectors (reflecting either unobserved accumulation of intangible organizational capital, spillovers, or both), but with a long lag. Contemporaneously, however, investments in ICT may be associated with lower TFP as resources are diverted to reorganization and learning. We find that U.S. industry results are consistent with GPT stories: the acceleration after the mid-1990s was broadbased--located primarily in ICT-using industries rather than ICT-producing industries. Furthermore, industry TFP accelerations in the 2000s are positively correlated with (appropriately weighted) industry ICT capital growth in the 1990s. Indeed, as GPT stories would suggest, after controlling for past ICT investment, industry TFP accelerations are negatively correlated with increases in ICT usage in the 2000s.
    Keywords: Information technology ; Labor productivity ; Industrial productivity
    Date: 2006
  4. By: Matthew Gentzkow; Jesse M. Shapiro
    Abstract: We construct a new index of media slant that measures whether a news outlet's language is more similar to a congressional Republican or Democrat. We apply the measure to study the market forces that determine political content in the news. We estimate a model of newspaper demand that incorporates slant explicitly, estimate the slant that would be chosen if newspapers independently maximized their own profits, and compare these ideal points with firms' actual choices. Our analysis confirms an economically significant demand for news slanted toward one's own political ideology. Firms respond strongly to consumer preferences, which account for roughly 20 percent of the variation in measured slant in our sample. By contrast, the identity of a newspaper's owner explains far less of the variation in slant, and we find little evidence that media conglomerates homogenize news to minimize fixed costs in the production of content.
    JEL: D78 K23 L82
    Date: 2006–11
  5. By: James Albrecht (Georgetown University, IFAU Uppsala, CESifo and IZA Bonn); Gerard J. van den Berg (Free University Amsterdam, IFAU Uppsala, CEPR, IFS and IZA Bonn); Susan Vroman (Georgetown University, IFAU Uppsala, CESifo and IZA Bonn)
    Abstract: The Swedish adult education program known as the Knowledge Lift (1997-2002) was unprecedented in its size and scope, aiming to raise the skill level of large numbers of lowskill workers. This paper evaluates the potential effects of this program on aggregate labor market outcomes. This is done by calibrating an equilibrium search model with heterogeneous worker skills using pre-program data and then forecasting the program impacts. We compare the forecasts to observed aggregate labor market outcomes after termination of the program.
    Keywords: job search, returns to education, program evaluation, wages, unemployment, Swedish labor market, calibration
    JEL: J21 J64 J31 J24 I21 C31
    Date: 2006–10
  6. By: Cyrus C. M. Mody
    Abstract: Longstanding debates about the role of the university in national culture and the global economy have entered a new phase in the past decade in most industrialized, and several industrializing, countries. One important focus of this debate is corporate involvement in academic scientific research. Proponents of the academic capitalism say that corporate involvement makes the university leaner, more agile, better able to respond to the needs of the day. Critics say that corporate involvement leaves society without the independent, critical voices traditionally lodged in universities. I argue that a science and technology studies perspective, using case studies of research communities, can push this debate in directions envisioned by neither proponents nor critics. I use the development and commercialization of the scanning tunneling microscope and the atomic force microscope as an example of how research communities continually redraw the line between corporate and academic institutions.
    JEL: N8 O17 O3 O31 O33 Z1 Z13
    Date: 2006–11
    Abstract: Both scholars and practitioners increasingly attest to the importance of developmental on-the-job (OTJ) experiences as the primary source of managerial learning. However, there is no single theory of managerial OTJ learning; several elements are missing in the conceptualization of the developmental OTJ experience construct, no comprehensive nomological network of the construct has been developed so far, and the underlying mechanisms explaining the relationship with relevant learning outcomes have not been examined in depth. In response to these shortcomings, current paper proposes an integrative framework of managerial learning from developmental OTJ experiences. First, we suggest developing a better understanding of the developmental OTJ experience construct by considering it from a scope beyond the managers’ job assignments, by also including more quantitative measures of OTJ experience and by looking further than the current job. Next, the central variable of interest is linked to individual and situational variables that influence directly the extent to which managers are confronted with developmental OTJ experiences as well as involve conditions that enhance or inhibit managerial learning (i.e. moderating mechanisms). Finally, our model emphasizes the importance to take into account relevant mediating mechanisms in order to fully understand the impact of OTJ experiences on managerial learning. Building on our model, we conclude with a discussion of promising avenues for future research.
    Date: 2006–11
  8. By: Situngkir, Hokky
    Abstract: The article discussed about the research opportunities in social complexity studies, especially in Indonesia. This issue is connected to the establishment a social research institute in Indonesia, how to establish and maintain it regarding the interdisciplinary research field. However a lot of localities are taken into the consideration to maintain the social complexity research institute, there would always things that can be learnt by any other similar research institute.
    Keywords: research institute; social complexity studies; interdiscplinary research
    JEL: L31 B40
    Date: 2006–11–11
  9. By: Peter H Huang (Temple University, James E. Beasley School of Law); Christopher J Anderson (Psychology Department, Temple University)
    Date: 2006–03
  10. By: Donna K. Ginther; Shulamit Kahn
    Abstract: Many studies have shown that women are under-represented in tenured ranks in the sciences. We evaluate whether gender differences in the likelihood of obtaining a tenure track job, promotion to tenure, and promotion to full professor explain these facts using the 1973-2001 Survey of Doctorate Recipients. We find that women are less likely to take tenure track positions in science, but the gender gap is entirely explained by fertility decisions. We find that in science overall, there is no gender difference in promotion to tenure or full professor after controlling for demographic, family, employer and productivity covariates and that in many cases, there is no gender difference in promotion to tenure or full professor even without controlling for covariates. However, family characteristics have different impacts on women's and men's promotion probabilities. Single women do better at each stage than single men, although this might be due to selection. Children make it less likely that women in science will advance up the academic job ladder beyond their early post-doctorate years, while both marriage and children increase men's likelihood of advancing.
    JEL: J4 J71
    Date: 2006–11
  11. By: Elchanan Ben-Porath (Department of Economics, Hebrew University); Aviad Heifetz (Department of Economics, The Open University of Israel)
    Date: 2005–06
  12. By: Baldini, Nicola
    Abstract: Starting from a review of more than 50 papers, this work will present a detailed overview of threats stemming from university patenting activity, then it will draw some policy implications and it will conclude with some suggestions for further research.
    Keywords: university patents; entrepreneurial university; open science; secrecy
    JEL: O31
    Date: 2006–03–27

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