Rethinking Strategic Learning

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Russ Vince examines learning as both a social and a strategic process, invariably linked to emotions and politics that are mobilized by attempts at learning and organizing. He makes a substantial contribution to theories of organizational learning and develops new ideas about critical reflection and collective leadership. The author outlines a critical perspective on HRD, arguing that staff responsible for learning and change in organizations have put too much effort into the development of individuals and not enough into understanding and engaging with organizational dynamics that limit and shape individuals' opportunities and abilities to learn and change. HRD is explained as an intervention within a political system and practice of management and leadership, with all the difficulties and contradictions that attempting to manage and to lead are likely to contain and reveal. This means that the focus of HRD is on action, on developing the capacity to act, on generating credibility through action, and on influencing and working with others in situations loaded with emotion and politics.