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Constructing learning: adversarial and collaborative working in the British construction industry

Constructing learning: adversarial and collaborative working in the British construction industry
Constructing learning: adversarial and collaborative working in the British construction industry
This paper examines two competing systems of work organisation in the British construction industry and their consequences for learning. Under the traditional 'adversarial' system, conflict, hostility and litigation between contractors are commonplace. Such a climate actively militates against collective learning and knowledge sharing between parties.

Conversely, under 'collaborative working', contractors share risks, pool knowledge and work together to solve problems at all stages and levels in the productive system - a process conceptualised as 'knotworking' by some theorists. The paper argues that such learning theories fail to take adequately into account the heavy hand of history and the importance of understanding the nature of the productive systems in which 'knotworking' is expected to take root. Both place limits on making 'knotworking' a habitual and commonplace activity in construction.
collaborative working, partnering, co-configuration, knotworking, construction, learning, productive systems
1363-9080
243-260
Bishop, Daniel
ab6b70cb-77d2-4bf3-9f16-539f8b003fad
Felstead, Alan
514e6ef7-2443-49aa-883e-706911d9191d
Fuller, Alison
c6b47796-05b5-4548-b67e-2ca2f2010fef
Jewson, Nick
f96f4be3-d026-4140-9c81-265d74aab544
Unwin, Lorna
f41aa009-4f12-4887-8427-50d344d5d9b3
Bishop, Daniel
ab6b70cb-77d2-4bf3-9f16-539f8b003fad
Felstead, Alan
514e6ef7-2443-49aa-883e-706911d9191d
Fuller, Alison
c6b47796-05b5-4548-b67e-2ca2f2010fef
Jewson, Nick
f96f4be3-d026-4140-9c81-265d74aab544
Unwin, Lorna
f41aa009-4f12-4887-8427-50d344d5d9b3

Bishop, Daniel, Felstead, Alan, Fuller, Alison, Jewson, Nick and Unwin, Lorna (2009) Constructing learning: adversarial and collaborative working in the British construction industry. Journal of Education and Work, 22 (4), 243-260. (doi:10.1080/13639080903290355).

Record type: Article

Abstract

This paper examines two competing systems of work organisation in the British construction industry and their consequences for learning. Under the traditional 'adversarial' system, conflict, hostility and litigation between contractors are commonplace. Such a climate actively militates against collective learning and knowledge sharing between parties.

Conversely, under 'collaborative working', contractors share risks, pool knowledge and work together to solve problems at all stages and levels in the productive system - a process conceptualised as 'knotworking' by some theorists. The paper argues that such learning theories fail to take adequately into account the heavy hand of history and the importance of understanding the nature of the productive systems in which 'knotworking' is expected to take root. Both place limits on making 'knotworking' a habitual and commonplace activity in construction.

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Published date: September 2009
Keywords: collaborative working, partnering, co-configuration, knotworking, construction, learning, productive systems

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 154753
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/154753
ISSN: 1363-9080
PURE UUID: 2f0e3701-32a2-4473-bb63-682426f79b39

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 26 May 2010 09:03
Last modified: 25 Feb 2019 17:31

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