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Abstract

The concept of knowledge and its related dimensions of information and learning have traditionally received considerable research attention by scholars of organization and strategic management theorists. The increasing role of knowledge as defining characteristic of the modern knowledge economy has renewed an interest to the importance of knowledge to a firm's competitive advantage. Such interest has raised a significant conceptual issue as to whether the new knowledge economy warrants an alternative framework to understanding competitive strategy. As a result, a conceptual model of knowledge based competitive advantage is proposed. Such a conceptual framework rests upon the subjective tenets of Austrian entrepreneurship and strategic network perspectives. Based on this conceptual framework, the central argument of this research is founded on the subjective behaviors of the alert entrepreneur where: knowledge based competitive advantage rests upon the management of strategic networks of strong and weak information ties so as to capitalize diverse knowledge experiences in creating and exploiting the complementary relations of a changing knowledge economy. The contribution of this research is it provides a departure from the static perspectives of Resource-based view and Industrial Organizational economic perspectives in accommodating for evolutionary changes of network knowledge. Implicit in this perspective is that sustainable competitive performance is not a realizable outcome. Rather knowledge based competitive performance is transitory in which the extent of such performance is contingent on the management of evolving network relations.

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