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Knowledge appropriation and identity: toward a multi-discourse analysis

Kamoche, Ken; Beise-Zee, Rian; Mamman, Aminu


Professor of Human Resource Management

Rian Beise-Zee

Aminu Mamman


Knowledge appropriation has been underpinned by an assumption of the organization’s ‘entitlement’ to appropriate knowledge and the outcomes of its utilization. Given the complexity of knowledge and the potentially conflicting views held about it, this assumption is revealed to be theoretically imprecise in the way it marginalizes alternative voices through the pursuit of competitive advantage and ‘value capture’. We attribute this approach to the functionalist analytical lens which sees knowledge as an asset appropriable almost exclusively by the organization in the form of financial/economic ‘rents’. In order to advance understanding of the multi-faceted nature of the organization-individual appropriation regime, we make the case for an expansion of the discursive space for talking about the phenomenon, and posit the concept of ‘property in knowledge’ which we tie to the way individuals construct their identities.


Kamoche, K., Beise-Zee, R., & Mamman, A. (2014). Knowledge appropriation and identity: toward a multi-discourse analysis. Organization Studies, 35(9), doi:10.1177/0170840614531720

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Dec 12, 2013
Online Publication Date May 21, 2014
Publication Date Sep 1, 2014
Deposit Date Apr 5, 2018
Journal Organization Studies
Print ISSN 0170-8406
Electronic ISSN 1741-3044
Publisher SAGE Publications (UK and US)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 35
Issue 9
Keywords appropriation, discourse, identity, knowledge, ‘property in knowledge’
Public URL
Publisher URL
Copyright Statement Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: