Organisational learning in small learning organisations: an empirical overview

Organisational learning in small learning organisations: an empirical overview Much has been written, in recent years, on the subject of learning organisations and knowledge-based businesses. Most research in this area, however, focuses upon large businesses. In this type of firm, it appears the concepts of "organisational learning" and "learning organisation" can be, and often are, used interchangeably to describe learning-based individual and collective development. Until recently, issues relating to organisational learning in small businesses were mostly ignored or marginalised. This paper sets out to redress the balance. It reports a study of organisational learning in the small business sector of the UK economy. Research data, collected over the 1996-1998 period, through telephone surveys, in-depth interviews and case studies, were analysed through quantitative and qualitative methods. The results indicate that although learning can occur in the majority of small businesses in the sample, only a minority of these manage new knowledge strategically to sustain and advance their competitive advantage. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Education + Training Emerald Publishing

Organisational learning in small learning organisations: an empirical overview

Education + Training, Volume 42 (4/5): 10 – Jun 1, 2000

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2000 MCB UP Ltd. All rights reserved.
ISSN
0040-0912
DOI
10.1108/00400910010373642
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Much has been written, in recent years, on the subject of learning organisations and knowledge-based businesses. Most research in this area, however, focuses upon large businesses. In this type of firm, it appears the concepts of "organisational learning" and "learning organisation" can be, and often are, used interchangeably to describe learning-based individual and collective development. Until recently, issues relating to organisational learning in small businesses were mostly ignored or marginalised. This paper sets out to redress the balance. It reports a study of organisational learning in the small business sector of the UK economy. Research data, collected over the 1996-1998 period, through telephone surveys, in-depth interviews and case studies, were analysed through quantitative and qualitative methods. The results indicate that although learning can occur in the majority of small businesses in the sample, only a minority of these manage new knowledge strategically to sustain and advance their competitive advantage.

Journal

Education + TrainingEmerald Publishing

Published: Jun 1, 2000

Keywords: Small firms; Knowledge management; Strategy

References

  • The Learning Organisation
    Garratt, R
  • Employee Development
    Harrison, R
  • The fifth generation innovation process
    Rothwell, R

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