Learning-in-practise: The social complexity of learning in working life

Abstract
If learning is an integral part of living; if working life demands learning as a condition of survival; if learning is an essential human condition, why is it that we have such difficulty engaging with the phenomenon? This paper engages with this question and explores the complex interconnections that underpin the social complexity of learning in working life. The discussion provides a critique of our current approaches in engaging with the dynamics of learning in working life. Attention is drawn to our modes of thinking and the tendency to look for outcomes like change as evidence of the ongoing co-evolution of learning, working and living. The analysis highlights four neglected dimensions of learning: inter-connectivity, diversity, self-organisation and politics. These dimensions are discussed drawing on the main principles of complexity science and process theories of becoming and a new conceptualisation of learning as a flow expanding the space of possibility is presented. This perspective is further elaborated in the notion of learning-in-practise which is introduced as a new avenue for future learning research.
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