Working Paper Series, Department of Industrial Economics & Strategy, Copenhagen Business School
Nicolai J Foss and Thorbjørn Knudsen
The Ressource-Based Tangle: Towards a Sustainable Explanation of Competitive Advantage
Abstract: The arguably dominant contemporary approach to the
analysis of sustained competitive advantage is the resource-based view.
Taking Barney (1991) and Peteraf (1993) as representative summary
statements of the view, we argue that much resource-based research rests on
partial, implicit and problematic assumptions, and that this has led to
conclusions that are much less general than the proponents of the view
believe. As an example, the widely cited value-rareness-inimitability or
heterogeneity-immobility-ex post and ex ante limits to competition lists do
not stand up to scrutiny. In general, the view suffers from a confusion of
what are necessary conditions for the expression of sustained competitive
advantage and what are additional conditions which only serve to give the
expression of sustained competitive advantage a specific form. We argue
that there are only two necessary conditions for the expression of
sustained competitive advantage, namely uncertainty and immobility, and
that all other conditions are additional.
Keywords: firm strategy; competitive advantage; resources; (follow links to similar papers)
JEL-Codes: L1; L21; M21; (follow links to similar papers)
Before downloading any of the electronic versions below
you should read our statement on
for viewing Postscript files and the
Acrobat Reader for viewing and printing pdf files.
Report other problems with accessing this service to Sune Karlsson ()
or Helena Lundin ().
Design by Joachim Ekebom