An Organisational Perspective on Professionals’ Learning

  • Bente ElkjaerEmail author
  • Ulrik Brandi
Part of the Springer International Handbooks of Education book series (SIHE)


The purpose and contribution of our chapter is to provide a vision for professionals’ learning in light of the field of organisational learning, and through this lens to incorporate various understandings of the organisational dynamics that professionals work and learn in and through. Inspired by some of the founding fathers of the field of organisational learning, Chris Argyris and Donald Schön (1978, 1996: 3), we ask: “What is an organisation that professionals may learn?” We answer this question by introducing three understandings of organisations and the learning theories that they are connected with. These are respectively a behavioural, a cognitive and a practice-based perspective on organisational learning. We propose that these lenses on organisations and learning may help us see professionals’ learning as contextualised in both their work practices and their places of work, i.e. organisations.


Organization studies Organizational learning Professional development Learning theories Practice-based studies Pragmatism 


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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of EducationAarhus UniversityAarhusDenmark

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