Title

Shall we dance? A design epistemology for organizational learning and performance

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

1-1-2004

Abstract

Management experts claim that organizational learning, knowledge management, intellectual capital, and related concepts are more important to today's organizations than traditional assets such as natural resources and skilled labor. Management thus enters domains more typically studied by those in training, education, and human performance technology, and fundamental questions asked by philosophers are now asked by CEOs;for example, What is knowledge? and How do people learn? Cook and Brown (1999) responded with an attractive metaphor. They claimed that a "generative dance" of knowledge and knowing results in new knowledge and new knowing. However, they portrayed this dance as if it happens automatically. In this article, it is argued that human intentions play a major role, and that when intentions are added, the dance is accurately described as designing. Design, then, provides alternative answers to the fundamental questions about knowledge and learning, as well as different competencies for professional practice and different directions for enhancing organizational success. An attempt at such answers, competencies, and directions is made by linking literatures on learning and performance with design and by articulating what is essentially a design epistemology.

Publication Name

Educational Technology Research and Development

Volume Number

52

First Page

33

Last Page

48

Issue Number

1

DOI

10.1007/BF02504771

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