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Subject HRD agenda in Europe
Context Analysis of the European agenda of HRD, based on the evaluation of papers presented at the conference on HRD research and practice across Europe, Kingston Business School, London, 15 January 2000
Summary The diverse range of contributions to the conference on HRD research and practice across Europe, held at Kingston Business School in 2000 (Conference 2000), indicate the breadth of the HRD agenda in Europe. The following common themes may be identified:
  • "HRD in Europe is a much more 'fuzzy' concept than is understood within the USA. There are no recognisable boundaries, and the disciplinary base is not confined to areas such as systems theory, labour economics, organisation development, adult education, etc.
  • HRD research in Europe welcomes a wide range of research designs and methodologies.
  • The European tradition of critically reflective discourse that seeks to explore and challenge concepts and frameworks is also present in European HRD research.
  • There is an acute awareness that many of the established prescriptions of professional practice (e.g. competencies, mentoring, strategic integration of HRD, HRD practitioner skills and roles) are not wholly adequate and require adaptation to cultural circumstances.
  • 'Managing' learning in organisations is less about adhering to formal procedures for design, delivery, etc. of instruction, and increasingly about creating the environmental conditions (including building trust, fostering networks, and working with a range of stakeholders) within which learning can take place."
Key terms HRD agenda; concept of HRD; critically reflective discourse; professional practice; environmental conditions for learning
Source Woodall et al. 2001a, pp. 350f.
Descriptors D-HRD EP00          R06
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Editor: Sabine Manning  © WIFO