What is it about?
The purpose of the paper is to provide an operative framework to measure intellectual capital (IC) in SMEs and to apply it to the Italian manufacturing context. A second aim is to profile the level and the structure of IC in these firms, identifying different clusters with diverse IC profile and analysing the impact of IC on firm performance. A survey was conducted in the Italian manufacturing context. After a descriptive analysis revealing the level of IC components, cluster analysis was executed for IC profiling, while multiple linear regression models were developed to analyse the relationship between IC and firm performance. A heterogeneous IC structure emerged and three clusters were obtained and described. A positive relationship between IC components and firm performance was demonstrated. This research contributes to measuring IC in manufacturing SMEs by providing an operative integrated framework, to understand its structure and level and its effect on firm success. Managers of SMEs can draw guidelines for IC evaluation to develop internal auditing systems, to communicate adequately IC value to any stakeholders and to support decisions in managing their IC, thereby maximizing firm performance.
The following have contributed to this page: Professor Chiara Verbano