Chapter 11

Processing Business News for Detecting Firms’ Global Networking Strategies 1

11.1. Introduction

Competitive Intelligence (CI) has now evolved into an internationally recognized discipline, which is indispensable for the organization’s strategy and economic performance [BOT 04]. With increased global competition, sustained and often radical innovations, volatile markets, and strong pressure from shareholders on financial performance, the economic environment of organizations is very difficult to apprehend. In addition to defensive approaches, offensive approaches which advocate a dynamic CI directly linked to the company’s decision-making process and geared toward understanding the complex environment in which the company evolves, have become essential.

Research has long emphasized the importance of engaging in competitive intelligence activity and of understanding the ever-changing technical capabilities of any given industry [BRO 98, GLU 94]. This is of paramount importance today, since more unexpected competitors are emerging from “outsider” industries. Companies that use action-oriented CI and possess advanced tools to assess their environment and competitors’ capabilities have been shown to outperform companies that do not invest in the intelligence process [SUB 98]. Since timely information gathering is the basis and key of CI, knowing how to collect CI in the environment of Web 2.0 is essential as Web 2.0 harnesses collective intelligence.

Web 2.0 refers to the ...

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