Calls for papers


International Journal of Learning and Change
International Journal of Learning and Change


Special Issue on: "Flexible Learning Organisations"

Guest Editor: Anders Örtenblad, Halmstad University, Sweden

Many scholars agree that the concept of the learning organisation is not precise due to the fact that each organisation is unique and that organisations should be given the adequate flexibility to de-velop their own and relevant conditions leading to an effective learning organisation. Some of these issues have been discussed in recent literature on organisational and individual learning. During the process of becoming an effective learning organisation, in fact, organisations must be given enough space and time for creativity action and synthesis of their own, customised versions of the learning organisations. This may also generate different tensions and will probably provide even more uncertainty and ambiguity in organisations, thus prevent them from implementing a learning organisation. For the idea of learning organisation to be meaningful, it needs to have practical relevance and value, and the question is how relevant the concept of an effective learning organisation is for business growth and development.

This special issue aims to draw on theory and practice of learning organisations and the process of adaptation of learning in a varied organisational context. The issue addresses how the idea of the learning organisation should be adapted to various internal and external circumstances, contexts, situations, etc. All papers, both theoretical and empirical using qualitative and quantitative methods, on flexible learning organisations are welcome.

Subject Coverage
Following papers fall in the area of interest of this special issue:
Experiences from and suggestions for how the learning organisation could be adapted to, for instance, one or some of the following parameters:
  • Flexibility as a concept and its relevance to organisational learning
  • Governance and bureaucratic processes in learning organisations
  • Organic and evolutionary structures and processes in corporate entrepreneurship
  • Learning in SMEs and MNCs
  • Professional or/and/vs. non-professional (less trained) learning organisations
  • International business structures in learning organisations
  • Learning organisations related to service innovation
  • Learning processes in services or/and/vs. product producing organisations
  • Learning through resource leveraging and venture capital formation (rich vs. poor organisations)
  • Learning at different growth cycles and industry lifecycles (prosperity and recession issues)

Notes for Prospective Authors

Submitted papers should not have been previously published nor be currently under consideration for publication elsewhere

All papers are refereed through a peer review process. A guide for authors, sample copies and other relevant information for submitting papers are available on the Author Guidelines page

Since the idea of the learning organisation has been defined in many different ways, by different authors, and since this special issue is about trying to find some sort of order in this chaos, it might actually – in this specific case – be a good idea to have a common frame of reference for all submitters. Therefore, it is advisable that everybody is familiar with two of my own pieces, namely:

"A typology of the idea of learning organisation", (Örtenblad, A., 2002, Management Learning 33(2): 213-230) and "The learning organisation: Towards an integrated model", and (Örtenblad, A., 2004, The Learning Organization 11(2): 129-144)

and in some way relate their own work to one or both of these papers.

Important Dates

100 word abstract to by: 1 February 2008.
Please indicate subject: 'Call for papers – Abstract'. All abstracts must be submitted as Microsoft Word documents, Times New Roman 12, single space. They must contain on the first page a title, authors’ names, postal addresses, telephone numbers, e-mail addresses, and keywords.

Notification of acceptance: 1 March 2008

Full paper due: 1 June 2008

Notification of acceptance: 1 September 2008

Final version of paper due: 1 October 2008