1. The termsintangible assets orintangibles refer to any nonphysical assets that can produce economic benefits. They cover broad concepts such asintellectual capital, knowledge assets, human capital andorganizational capital as well as more specific attributes likequality of corporate governance andcustomer loyalty.
2. R.S. Kaplan and D.P. Norton, “Strategy Maps: Converting Intangible Assets into Tangible Outcomes” (Boston: Harvard Business School Press, 2004) provide a strategy and management view of intangibles. B. Lev, “Intangibles: Management, Measurement and Reporting” (Washington, D.C.: Brookings Institution Press, 2001) discusses intangibles chiefly from an accounting perspective. A broad, more technical, discussion of intangibles is given in J. Hand and B. Lev, eds., “Intangible Assets: Values, Measures and Risk” (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2003), which discusses management, valuation and economic issues.
3. The editor’s introduction to two articles on intangible assets in Harvard Business Review 82 (June 2004): 108, states: “Everybody knows that in the modern corporation intangible assets are the source of greatest value.... The nonmanagement of intangible assets has measurable costs.”
4. A summary of the Accenture study, “Survey Results on Accounting for and Managing Intangible Assets,” can be found at: www.accenture.com/Global/Services/By_Subject/Shareholder_Value/R_and_I/SurveyAssets.htm.
5. I use the termstext mining anddata mining broadly to refer to any type of automated analysis of collections of text documents and data in databases. For example, text mining can include not only data extraction from text but also automated classification of content in documents.
6. See W. Zadrozny, “Text Analytics for Asset Valuation,” IBM research report RC23311, IBM Corp., Yorktown Heights, New York, 2004. I present a comprehensive list of 90 different types of intangible assets mentioned in academic research, consultant reports and during mergers and acquisitions. I also discuss the status of text- and data-mining technologies and specific cases where they have been used to monitor intangibles. In W. Zadrozny, “Making the Intangibles Visible: How Emerging Technologies Will Redefine Enterprise Dashboards,” IBM research report RC24020, IBM Corp., Yorktown Heights, New York, 2006, I describe how the monitoring of intangibles can be integrated with existing enterprise reporting applications. The research is based on published cases of enterprises using the technology to monitor their intangible assets. It presents details of an argument that monitoring opportunities exist for more than 80% of intangibles and describes cases where multiple text- and data-mining modules are used together. Both reports are available at http://domino.watson.ibm.com/library/cyberdig.nsf.