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The future for networked learning moves fast and its participants become continually better informed

In a “learning economy,” the innate, unstoppable competitive force of network-driven organisational learning will transform everything in its path.

In it, organisations, their leaders and teams will increasingly adapt themselves to learn faster, finding new and novel ways to develop and build on the collective wisdom, knowledge and talent they already contain. 

As such, this newsletter comprises a linkblog of posts clustered generally around this theme, and on that of related future knowledge-driven workplace strategies.

I have no fixed schedule for publishing this work, but, interview content aside, each issue will generally comprise from six to 10 links as I find items I consider sufficiently related and deserving to pass on and share with you and other like minds. If you are able to suggest other related content you also find interesting to which you think I should refer or might include – with full thanks, and attribution, of course –  please let me know at graham@thelearningeconomy.com.

 

About me

By background, I am a former sub-editor (an editorial sense-making and quality control role) on the pages of the Australian Financial Review newspaper group in Sydney, Australia, and I have an MBA (Technology) from the University of New South Wales in Sydney. The focus of that qualification is on creating the organisations of the future, driving and in response to changes in technology, through the management of organisational strategy, learning, knowledge and innovation, new product development, sustainability, people, culture and change.

I first got excited about the scope for collaborative, networked innovation and learning in 2006 on reading the work of then Harvard Business School professor Andrew McAfee on the potential of “Enterprise 2.0.” McAfee’s insight was that the traditional barriers to innovation result when people with ideas are hindered by distance or hierarchy, or simply by not knowing who is whom, who is qualified, interested or accomplished in what, or even that each other exists.

Yet through blogs and wikis, McAfee and his supporters proposed, an organisation could open up and enable those within to identify and reach each other and thereby capitalise on the specialised sum of personal knowledge of those within the firm, wherever it could be found. And those tools could be effective in capturing precisely the emergent organisational learning that results from change.

Through that reading, my skills and subsequent study, I developed a fascination for the potential of documenting and transforming knowledge to drive organisational learning, using the best tools ever invented for the purpose. 

This has informed my work and my interest ever since, as every organisation contains more intelligence, insight, experience and raw, latent capability than it ever puts to use.

My own take on this is that organisations can possibly first and best learn to discover, build and manage their knowledge by using Wikipedia as their model.

As a director of the award-winning Shiro Architects, founded by my wife, Hiromi, I have also, through my own research and writing, acquired an innate interest in how the “knowledge architecture” of faster learning organisations will inevitably transform their workplace strategies, behaviours and knowledge communities.

In a learning economy, shaping and delivering knowledge productivity will likely come to feature more prominently as a concern for built working environments, themselves configured more closely in alignment with the understandings, insights and needs of their individual occupiers and teams.

Graham Lauren