Informal Learning in Workplaces: Understanding Learning Culture as a Challenge for Organizational and Individual Development

Christoph Fischer, Bridget N. O’Connor

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Organizations rely on new knowledge. Carriers and creators of knowledge are the members of the organizations. These individuals have to do the actual learning and acquire new knowledge. The organization can only support the individuals in their learning processes. One way to do this is to create an organizational culture that supports and values learning. It is called learning culture. Learning culture represents the organization’s view and its values concerning learning. The differences between this organizational learning culture and the individual’s views on learning are the focus of this chapter. First, we describe and define the concept of “learning culture” as an environment that encompasses what an organization can offer in the way of structured and unstructured learning affordances. Included in this section is a discussion of two instruments that have been used to measure learning culture as well as the results of studies that have relied on such measures. The second section discusses the internal foundations or the epistemic beliefs that shape the individuals’ understanding on what knowledge is and how to obtain it. In our conclusion section, we attempt to put the two sections together in a way that may help us better study and support an organization’s learning culture.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProfessional and Practice-based Learning
PublisherSpringer Nature
Number of pages14
StatePublished - 2014

Publication series

NameProfessional and Practice-based Learning
ISSN (Print)2210-5549
ISSN (Electronic)2210-5557


  • Affective Commitment
  • Human Resource Development
  • Knowledge Creation
  • Learning Environment
  • Organizational Culture

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Education


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