This study investigates whether and how internal communication affects the development of the intellectual and relational capital, which represent critical resources to achieve defensible competitive positions. In particular it explores how the contexts of communities of practice represent communicational conditions appropriate to develop knowledge and relationships. The empirical part provides a case study of one community of practice: the General Business Community of IBM Italy. The results of the interviews and of the questionnaire show that communities of practice help to generate both intellectual and relational capital, reducing barriers to knowledge sharing and developing networks of interpersonal relationships.
Keywords: Internal communication, intellectual capital, knowledge, relational capital, trust, community of practice