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The Economics of Knowledge Sharing

A New Institutional Approach Edited by Ernst Helmstädter, former Research Professor of Economics, Institute for Work and Technology, Science Centre of North-Rhine Westphalia, Germany
The book first considers knowledge sharing institutions, differentiating between types of interaction and types of actors. Secondly, it examines the economic role of knowledge and cognition, asking how and why human actors gather knowledge. It goes on to revisit historical questions of knowledge and embeds them within the contemporary debate, before finally reflecting on the significant relationship between technology and knowledge sharing in the digital age.
Extent: 208 pp
Hardback Price: $127.00 Web: $114.30
Publication Date: 2004
ISBN: 978 1 84376 423 6
Availability: In Stock
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The Economics of Knowledge Sharing claims that useful economic knowledge is the most important foundation for the development of a sufficiently strong process of innovation. Within the framework of new institutional economics, the book looks at the institutional conditions required for the interactive sharing and dissemination of knowledge in the development of economies. It outlines in four distinct parts the complex societal process of human interaction by which knowledge is effectively generated and used.

The book first considers knowledge sharing institutions, differentiating between types of interaction and types of actors. Secondly, it examines the economic role of knowledge and cognition, asking how and why human actors gather knowledge. It goes on to revisit historical questions of knowledge and embeds them within the contemporary debate, before finally reflecting on the significant relationship between technology and knowledge sharing in the digital age.

Opening up a new area of research encompassing the institutional framework of the innovation process, this pathbreaking volume will be of enormous interest to a wide-ranging audience including economists in the fields of theory, innovation research, new institutional economics, evolutionary economics, history of economic thought, and education policy. As knowledge sharing interactions are akin to other kinds of competition aside from economic, this book will also be warmly welcomed by social and political scientists specialising in a variety of related topics.
‘The book sheds light on a broad range of topics including a discussion of the pertinent institutions, an examination of motivation, the relevance of human capital, and the role of innovations such as the internet. On all of this, the writers offer stimulating observations and, given the importance of the dissemination of intellectual property for our innovative and rapidly growing economies, their insights will undoubtedly prove valuable and stimulating for investigators of this subject.’
– William J. Baumol, Journal of Evolutionary Economics

‘This issue of knowledge as a key factor of production has been emphasized in the European tradition of economics from Wolff on through Roscher, and in particular by Schumpeter in his seventh chapter of his renowned Theory of Development. Fritz Machlup, who came from the same tradition, emphasized the theme in a great project. This collection of essays picks up the lead, and in this way provides thought that can be translated into research proposals that could ultimately lead to results which provide conditions for growth, employment and prosperity. The seeds are there, they just need to be sown.’
– Jürgen G. Backhaus, Erfurt University, Germany
Contributors: P. Brödner, G. Bünstorf, E. Helmstädter, G. Kubon-Gilke, B.J. Loasby, E. Muchlinski, R. Richter, J. Schumann, P.J. Siemer, B. Widmaier
Contents: 1. Introduction Part I: Knowledge Sharing Institutions 2. The Institutional Economics of Knowledge Sharing: Basic Issues 3. New Institutional Economics and Knowledge Sharing Part II: Knowledge and Cognition 4. Motivation, Learning, Knowledge Sharing and Division of Labour 5. Processes of Knowledge Sharing: From Cognitive Psychology to Economics 6. The Cognitive Basis of Institutions: An Evolutionary Aspect Part III: The Knowledge Issue in Economics 7. Human Capital, Knowledge and Knowledge Sharing: A View from the History of Economic Thoughts 8. Knowledge, Knowledge Sharing and Convention in Keynes’ Thinking Part IV: The Regulations for Digital Technology 9. The Internet: Universal Information Infrastructure for the Emerging Knowledge Society 10. Digitalization and Regulation: The German Case Index