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Knowledge Management in Asset Management

The idea that superior knowledge is required to drive financial out-performance runs counter to some of the most pervasive theoretical frameworks used by investors today. The Efficient Market Hypothesis and the Capital Asset Pricing Model, for example, posit that capital markets are efficient and that no consistent outperformance can be generated without increasing risk. Active asset managers, however, argue differently and claim that skills and knowledge are critical for capturing excess returns. We agree. In fact, in this paper we argue that knowledge assets and the use of superior knowledge are crucial to the success of all asset managers and, in particular, active managers. And yet, despite its clear importance, very little is known about knowledge management in asset management. This article thus seeks to remedy this by offering insight into the role that knowledge plays in the investment process and, more specifically, into the adoption of knowledge management by asset managers. The paper concludes with a roadmap that offers a way for investors to become knowledge and asset managers.