does HRD connect with lifelong learning? (Rosemary Harrison & Joseph
our view, HRD as an organisational process comprises the skilful planning
and facilitation of a variety of formal and informal learning and knowledge
processes and experiences, primarily but not exclusively in the workplace,
in order that organisational progress and individual potential can be enhanced
through the competence, adaptability, collaboration and knowledge-creating
activity of all who work for the organisation.
Our definition reflects a perspective on HRD that is in accord with the
current macro-level policy emphasis on lifelong learning and development.
One of the main tasks of public funded education is to invest in the development
of a high level workforce. Across the European Community the need to
invest heavily in human capital has for over a decade expressed itself
in a drive for life-long learning.
does HRD connect with the European lifelong learning agenda?
that the emergence of a knowledge economy offers exciting opportunities
to the HRD profession, and to those involved in the education and continuing
development of its members. We believe that the primary task is to work
with organisational stakeholders to create a synergy between the learning,
development and knowledge-creating capability of all organisational members,
the thrust of strategising and organising, and the progress of the organisation
as its boundaries grow ever more fluid in a turbulent world.
the need for the development of human capital to be a shared responsibility:
Within organisations the learning, and the development of knowledge on
which economic and social well-being greatly depend should be pursued through
a partnership process.
on the development of social as well as human capital: In organisations
where the tacit dimension of knowledge and its social construction form
a vital source of competitive advantage the HRD investment should be focused
strongly on the building of social capital, which is to do with the interactions
of all workers in an organisation.
the primacy of organisational context: HRD policies within the firm are
most powerfully shaped by top management's visions and values, by management
style and actions, by HR strategies and practice and by the employment
system of the firm. So HRD activity should be integrated with wider HR
and business practice in order to achieve its goals.
passages from the authors' notes and paper "Human resource development:
Key organisational process in a knowledge economy" prepared for presentation
at the HRD conference in Toulouse, May 2003 (see proceedings
and catalogue of references: Harrison
et al. 2003/ Harrison et al. 2003a )