Management of Knowledge Workers

45 Pages Posted: 5 May 2006 Last revised: 28 Sep 2013

See all articles by Hans K. Hvide

Hans K. Hvide

University of Bergen - Department of Economics; University of Aberdeen - Business School; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

Eirik Gaard Kristiansen

NHH Norwegian School of Economics; Norwegian School of Economics (NHH) - Department of Economics

Multiple version iconThere are 3 versions of this paper

Date Written: October 12, 2007


We study how firm-specific complementary assets and intellectual property rights affect the management of knowledge workers. The main results show when a firm will wish to sue workers that leave with innovative ideas, and the effects of complementary assets on wages and on worker initiative. We argue that firms protected weakly by complementary assets must sue leaving workers in order to obtain positive profits. Moreover, firms with more complementary assets pay higher wages and have lower turnover, but the higher pay has a detrimental effect on worker initiative. Finally, our analysis suggests that strengthening firms' property rights protection reduces turnover costs but weakens worker initiative.

Keywords: Entrepreneurship, Innovation, IPP, Litigation, Personnel economics, R&D, Start-ups

JEL Classification: J23, L00, K31, G00

Suggested Citation

Hvide, Hans and Kristiansen, Eirik Gaard, Management of Knowledge Workers (October 12, 2007). Available at SSRN: or

Hans Hvide

University of Bergen - Department of Economics ( email )

Fosswinckelsgt. 6
N-5007 Bergen, 5007

University of Aberdeen - Business School ( email )

Edward Wright Building
Dunbar Street
Aberdeen, Scotland AB24 3QY
United Kingdom


Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

United Kingdom

Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072

Eirik Gaard Kristiansen (Contact Author)

NHH Norwegian School of Economics ( email )

Helleveien 30
Bergen, NO-5045
+47 55 95 92 78 (Phone)
+47 55 95 95 43 (Fax)

Norwegian School of Economics (NHH) - Department of Economics

Helleveien 30
N-5035 Bergen

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics