Promoting Practice-Based Innovation Through Learning at Work

  • Per-Erik EllströmEmail author
  • Per Nilsen
Part of the Springer International Handbooks of Education book series (SIHE)


This chapter defines the concepts of innovation and practice-based innovation and describes some key characteristics of practice-based knowledge and research-based knowledge and how these two types of knowledge can be integrated to facilitate creative learning and practice-based innovation. Creative learning is assumed to occur when individuals or groups in an organization question established thought and action patterns and break away from routinized, habitual procedures to develop new ways of handling the duties and tasks involved in a job. In this way, creative learning can be a driving force for change and innovation in organizations. Reflection in the workplace is proposed as a mechanism for facilitation of creative learning and practice-based innovation. Although the literature on reflection provides strong arguments in favour of such activities, empirical research has described many challenges to reflection in the workplace. Reflection is often not allotted formal priority on the management agenda. Yet the potential of reflection cannot be fully realized without formalizing reflection as an expected legitimized activity in the workplace.


Innovation Practice-based innovation Research-based knowledge Practice-based knowledge Workplace learning Adaptive learning Creative learning Reflection 


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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Behavioural Sciences and LearningLinköping UniversityLinköpingSweden
  2. 2.HELIX VINN Excellence CentreLinköping UniversityLinköpingSweden
  3. 3.Department of Medical and Health SciencesLinköping UniversityLinköpingSweden

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