Saturday, 12 August 2017

Is the learning organisation still alive?

an article by Mike Pedler (Henley Business School, University of Reading, UK) and John G. Burgoyne (Management School, Lancaster University, Bailrigg, UK) published in The Learning Organization Volume 24 Issue 2 (2017)


It has recently been suggested that the learning organisation (LO) is dead (Pedler, 2013). The authors make the case here that it is still alive. This paper provides a brief history of LO and organisational learning, follows this with some survey findings, a discussion and an exploration of some related contemporary issues and concludes with an overview and summary of the conclusions.

Survey of practitioners.

From this small survey, whilst some of the 16 respondents are still excited by the idea, a larger group sees the learning organisation as more of a background concept, performed in ways that might not fit with the aspirations of 20 years ago.

Research limitations/implications
The authors started with the question: is the LO idea still alive in 2016? No clear answer emerges. Given the variety of the responses, it is difficult to sum them up in a simple way. The yea-sayer will find plenty of evidence for the LO’s continued existence and relevance, but the nay-sayers will also feel at least partly vindicated. What does emerge clearly arise from the mixed messages, are the opportunities for further research.

Practical implications
This paper calls for further research and suggests useful directions.

Social implications
LO is still seen as socially useful.

The paper is based on small empirical sample of practitioners who display multivocality on this concept.

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