Cultivating Collaborative Improvement: An Action Learning Approach


Middel, Rick and McNichols, Timothy (2004) Cultivating Collaborative Improvement: An Action Learning Approach. In: Continuous Innovation: Strategic Priorities for the Global Knowledge Economy. Proceedings (CD-ROM) of the 5th CINet conference, 22-25 September 2004, Sydney, Australia (pp. pp. 717-727).

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Abstract:As competitive pressure mounts to innovate in the global knowledge economy, many organizations are exploring new ways of collaborating with their supply chain partners. However, the process of implementing collaborative initiatives across disparate members of supply networks is fraught with difficulties. One approach designed to tackle the difficulties of organizational change and inter-organizational improvement in practice is `action learning¿. This paper examines the experiential lessons that arise when cultivating collaborative improvement in an interorganizational learning environment. The authors, acting as action researchers, facilitated a practical learning program in an Extended Manufacturing Enterprise involving a large system integrator in the automotive industry and three of its
suppliers. Based on this experience, a practical learning model is offered to promote and facilitate inter-organizational change as part of a collaborative improvement process.
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