Monday, August 10, 2015

Learning in the landscapes of practice - concept summary

Had time over the weekend (wet and snowy) to catch up on various accumulated links, readings and notes. One thread I followed through was on Wenger-Trayner's re-conceptualisation of the 'communities of practice' towards 'landscapes of practices'.

The newer conceptualisation of practice as landscape extends on the original premises of the socio-cultural foundation of learning. Communities of practices are linked, interconnected (loosely or tightly bound). Individuals traverse the landscape of practices as they enter and become part of specific communities of practices, often boundary crossing various communities due to the multi-disciplinary and multi-organisational nature of globalised organisations.

The book  summarising all the arguments represents a good first port of call to review one's own understanding of how communities of practices have shifted. Parts of the book is on Google books. Book overview can be obtained at this blog by David Rubeli and book review summary with s Nordic slant.

Since publication, Dr. Wenger has delivered several conference addresses summarising the approaches of landscapes of practice. This powerpoint is similar to the one used at a presentation given in 2013 at the University of Manchester.  Although about an hour long, worth a watch as the salient points are discussed.

In short, the concept of landscapes provides a refreshed view in light of the complexities now inherent in work organisation and the mobility of workers across discipline areas as their careers develop. Workers / learners have to continually negotiate / re-negotiate new perspectives as they are jostled from within their established Communities of Practice into being peripheral to others or their existing communities morph due to socio-political pressures. The journey is one across a landscape which is familiar but also includes gullies, unexpected turns and bluffs. Learning to walk through the landscape is now also as important as becoming part of the landscape.

No comments: