A very interesting paper from Graham Attwell and Cristina Costa at Pontydysgu on linking personal learning and work.

I particularly liked the following quote:

there is a discontinuity between the idea of integrating personal learning and working environments and the business strategies of many companies, a discontinuity which is fuelled by present policies and trends towards globalisation.

But I would say that there is more to it than these exteral drivers – such drivers are generally understood and interpreted through common mental maps. It is such mental maps that inhibit learning, especially double-loop learning and reinforce management paradigms that privilege control and compliance not learning. But, as the paper makes clear, a learning paradigm is the a more cogent response to these external drivers of change.

A further issue that perhaps falls outside the scope of this paper is how personal learning can resonate throughout an organisation to inform strategic decision-making, routines and common practices – I learn and we change. What routines and practices enable an organisation to systematically enable valuable individual learning to be identified, tested, adapted validated and transfered between teams, departments, divisions etc? May be its processes like the way Tescos tests ideas in single stores before expanding the ‘test bed’ to more and the more stores building up learning-by-doing experienceor Nokia’s rapid planning cycles. But can such routines and practices be replicated in other, less adaptive, organisations.

The paper also makes a series of interesting points ad predictions on ICT and learning which I will come back to in a future post,