What is actually missing from knowledge wealth in the present? How does one envision true growth in knowledge use in and across disciplines, when no one can be certain what areas would especially be affected by knowledge use rights? It would also take time to include such progress in today's definitions of wealth, without unduly antagonizing those who utilize knowledge primarily for upper income levels. The problem with present day knowledge use formations, is that they were not really designed to create the knowledge centered economy which people now need. This in turn prevents adequate representation of knowledge in the economy in a monetary sense.
Earlier methods of knowledge wealth capture have lost their regenerative capacity in recent decades, what with patent thickets and governments finding themselves needing to trim budgets for the services they were previously able to offer, especially in the 20th century. The larger problem - as services continue to be scaled back - is a loss of specific avenues of knowledge use planning and organization between public and private institutions, which consequently need to be envisioned in new ways.
Of course, one can still point to skills use capacity which still gets funded in some form or fashion, let alone the degree of knowledge actually required in any number of careers in both the public and private sectors. However, the fact remains that much knowledge today tends to be utilized in extractive and exclusive formations. Knowledge presently serves the greater purpose of the organization, which may or may not produce an actual consumptive good for the public. Or - in the case of medicine and healthcare, the extractive burden is also imposed on the broader society, due to licensing requirements of extended education and limitations into the educational process itself.
Much of the actual economic interaction which once happened individual to individual needs to be restored, along with flexible and evolving concepts of services considered negotiable for actual needs. Plus, services need to be distinguished from the often impersonal product of the corporation - also delivered in impersonal environments which have had considerable psychological ramifications. Already, generations have grown up with numerous product which are not really "supposed" to be associated with personal or individual effort. Without the economic points of references which earlier generations had, youth in any number of nations struggle with social relationships to a greater degree than the generations before them. This is one vital area that a new knowledge centered economy especially needs to address.
As a result, it has become more difficult over time to utilized knowledge in the ways we actually need it to work, for us. It is commonplace to think that property rights need to be enforced, in order for such rights to even be relevant. How did we understand this with physical or real properties, and yet completely miss it with knowledge? Perhaps it is the fact that real property was there all along, but knowledge in the ways we think of it now, was not. A big part of we think of as knowledge use "grew up" in institutions. That's why many find it difficult to imagine bringing knowledge out into the open now, to assist one another or to assist our governments as they struggle with today's limitations in societal coordination.
Before real value can be assigned to knowledge in an aggregate sense, we have to be able to understand how to tap into it directly, so as to activate services when institutions cannot, and activate negotiations and plans for resource use when our governments cannot. We also need to be able to utilize knowledge to begin anew in legal areas which are no longer truly addressable by the legal system as it now stands. But before we can do any of this, we have to assign property rights to knowledge use, as well as record and measure its use in time increments validated by the participants themselves. Presently, the most important work of our society is being left undone because it has become difficult for our institutions to hire individuals in the ways they are actually needed, either to help one another or to reach across the gridlock that has spread between institutions in many forms.
What are the monetary ramifications of such a restructuring over time? Even though it is difficult to imagine such knowledge use dispersal and rights in the beginning, ultimately to do so allows a far greater degree of wealth than which is actually possible in the present. What's more - where knowledge and skills sets and valuations are spread across populations to a far great degree, it also becomes easier to represent hard assets with such income (soft assets) in ways that are not forced to overstretch, in that all are actually engaged in wealth creation processes.
This simple fact of inclusion makes much of the governmental debt load for those left out of the process, largely unnecessary. When technology is allowed to innovate environments, not only does credit become a smaller factor in the economy overall, but the income to consumption ration becomes diminished in such a way that the illusion of poverty in the developed world would largely disappear. By making services skills immediate, many of the demographic issues of today would become less cumbersome as well. By shifting knowledge use in services to equal hour access, much of the economy would shift back to an active state, and flexible building components could readily reflect the flexible time arrangements which communities are able to arrange amongst themselves.
Ultimately, wealth is a combination of what we want it to be, what we need it to be, and what we imagine it could be. It becomes most active when we are inspired and break down the barriers to our own inspiration. In the long run, wealth can only rise to the degree that we are willing to take a chance on aggregate knowledge use. All of the assets that remain in our environment over time - all of the maintenance and care we are able to provide for them, depend on the degree to which we are willing to believe in our own self worth, our own participation and the creation of our own value in ways not just recognizable, but legitimately framed as well.