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By Harry Scarbrough (eds.)

ISBN-10: 0333568702

ISBN-13: 9780333568705

ISBN-10: 1349243949

ISBN-13: 9781349243945

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Certainly the different aspects of expertise need unpacking, and this is addressed under various headings below. However expertise is primarily and distinctively important as a site for the joint production of knowledge, economic value and social relations. As it evolves in particular localised settings, it reflects but also begins to shape its wider institutional context. 1 is not merely a reminder that expertise is amenable to a variety of differentiated perspectives but also an invitation to explore these integrating dynamics.

This threat is greatest for conventional models of professionalism, which have tended to dominate debates on the managerial aspects of expertise. The latter have bred an interest in the 'management of professionals' that presents the expertise issue primarily in terms of the clash of norms and values between two differentially socialised groups. With commitments to knowledge and some ethical baggage to boot, professionals and their practices are seen as either directly or obliquely clashing with hardnosed business managers.

In other words, the emphasis slips from truth to value and from epistemology to production and distribution. The crucial question becomes this: how is knowledge produced, distributed and valued across different social contexts? In the literature, answers to this question can be roughly arrayed to form a continuum. At one extreme knowledge is viewed in terms of its discrete content and its functional value (for example Sveiby and Lloyd, 1987; Machlup, 1990; Ericsson and Smith, 1991). In what can be termed this 'content theory', knowledge is seen as an objective entity that is acquired by individuals through learning and specialization and embodied, owned and controlled in a variety of forms.

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The Management of Expertise by Harry Scarbrough (eds.)

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