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Article of Volume 10, Issue 2, June 2015

The impact of hierarchical positions on communities of learning

Authors: Martin Rehm, Wim Gijselaers, Mien Segers

Abstract: Communities of Learning (CoL) are an innovative methodological tool to stimulate knowledge creation and diffusion within organizations. However, past research has largely overlooked how participants’ hierarchical positions influence their behavior within CoL. We address this shortcoming and provide empirical evidence on 25 CoL for a global training program, analyzing user statistics from 249 staff members. Our results indicate that participants’ level of activity and performance are significantly influenced by their hierarchical position. We also discover a duality among participants holding low hierarchical positions. The implications of these results and future research avenues are discussed.

Keywords: Communities of learning, Content analysis, Hierarchical positions, Learning in organizations

Citation: Rehm, M., Gijselaers, W., & Segers, M. (2015) The impact of hierarchical positions on communities of learning. ijcscl 10 (2), pp. 117-138

DOI: 10.1007/s11412-014-9205-8

Preprint: Acrobat-PDF rehm_gijselaers_segers_10_2.pdf

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