The Review of Austrian Economics

, Volume 24, Issue 4, pp 335-354

First online:

The capital-based view of the firm

  • Peter LewinAffiliated withUniversity of Texas at Dallas Email author 
  • , Howard BaetjerAffiliated withTowson University

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We offer here a capital-based view (CBV) that incorporates, and goes further than related views, (like the resource- and the knowledge-based view) of the firm. This general approach uses ideas about capital and its structure to examine the nature of heterogeneous resources and their attributes and how they are organized by entrepreneurs (individually and in teams). These entrepreneurs exercise judgment in valuing these heterogeneous resources in productive combinations that they attempt to create. This article uses insights gained from this understanding of the nature and function of capital to draw further propositions about the role of knowledge, management, and economic organization. We survey the main components of the CBV of the firm and examine management and organizational topics looking through the lens of the CBV. The capital dimension adds new insights and provides a powerful unifying framework.


Capital-based theory Firm boundaries Firm governance Uncertainty Capital complexity Knowledge-based view