Skip navigation

The commodification of knowledge and information

The commodification of knowledge and information

Rotta, Tomás N. ORCID: 0000-0002-5304-9890 and Teixeira, Rodrigo A. (2018) The commodification of knowledge and information. In: Vidal, Matt, Smith, Tony, Rotta, Tomás and Prew, Paul, (eds.) The Oxford Handbook of Karl Marx. OUP USA, New York. ISBN 978-0190695545 (doi:

PDF (Author Accepted Chapter)
21047 ROTTA_The_Commodification_of_Knowledge_and_Information_2018.pdf - Accepted Version

Download (495kB) | Preview


This entry presents an analysis of the commodification of knowledge and information in contemporary capitalism. We provide a consistent account of how information as a commodity effects the workings of both capitalism and of Marxist theory. The first part of the chapter critically revisits Marx’s own writings on the commodification of knowledge and how the immaterial labor hypothesis initially interpreted these writings. Based on the new categories knowledge-commodity and knowledge-rent, we then present our own approach in response to the challenges raised by the immaterial labor hypothesis. Lastly, there is an analysis of the more recent contributions on the commodification of knowledge and information within the Marxist literature. The current debate on the value of knowledge has been divided between two camps: the reproduction cost approach and the average cost approach. Finally, there is a look at empirical estimates of the magnitudes of knowledge-rents.

Item Type: Book Section
Additional Information: "This handbook is currently in development, with individual articles publishing online in advance of print publication."
Uncontrolled Keywords: Knowledge-commodities, knowledge-rents, value theory, Marx, immaterial labor
Faculty / School / Research Centre / Research Group: Faculty of Business
Faculty of Business > Department of International Business & Economics
Last Modified: 01 Nov 2019 01:38

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics