Human resource development (HRD) occupies some interesting educational territory. Given the rapid pace of development and innovation in education and in the practice of HRD, coupled with alternative approaches to learning, a re‐evaluation of HRD might be expected to be a prominent feature within discussions of the future practice of HRD. However, while there has been a growing demand in the academic literature of the last few years for management educators to engage more critically with their subject than has been the tradition in business schools. The case has been argued for strengthening the critical perspectives in contributory disciplines within management and for a revision of management more generally. Yet, while examples of critical pedagogies are accumulating, they seldom exhibit corresponding changes in HRD practices. Where HRD does depart from mainstream practices, alternatives are typically based on humanistic student‐centred aspirations for social equality, rather than on an analysis of HRD in terms of power, politics and social dynamics. The intention of this paper is to highlight what is not being talked about in HRD in order to illuminate the importance of power to the study of HRD. The paper will explore the significance of power in HRD, drawing on ideas from critical and post modern perspectives. By illuminating social and power relations embedded within HRD practices, the aim is to present a more contextualised and processual account than the proceduralist recipes that currently dominate the study of this vital aspect of educational and organisational practice.
Journal of European Industrial Training – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jan 1, 2004
Keywords: Human resource development; Deconstruction; Education
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