32 SES 16, Bounded Agency in Workplace Learning – A Comparative View
Since the early 1990s, the workplace has been rediscovered as a vital site of learning during adulthood which provides extensive and unique learning experience barely available in formal education. Workplace learning is responsible for building the backbone of occupational socialisation. Without a proper job at hand young people cannot complete their professional development as they miss out on key competences available in workplace learning only.
Analysing the interplay of individual and organisational bounded agency in workplace learning has been uncovered as a new research frontier. Only by better understanding of the interplay of individual and organisational bounded agency in workplace learning can a deadlock situation be overcome where all actors involved support workplace learning, yet little progress is actually achieved. Moreover, for understanding the impact of societal environments, which are restricting or expanding individual and organisational agency with regard to workplace learning, it is key to better understand how workplace learning emanates within the intersection of individual and organisational bounded agency.
For crafting a framework for studying the interplay of individual and organisational bounded agency in workplace learning, strands of the literature on workplace learning (Fuller and Unwin, 2004; Koike and Inoki, 1990), on organisational institutionalism (Scott, 2014) and on new structuralism in social stratification (Tomaskovic-Devey, 2014) are combined with approaches to individual bounded agency in workplace learning (Evans, 2007; Evans, 2017).
The symposium presents findings of 17 in-depth organisational case studies designed to shed light on the interplay of individual and organisational agency in workplace learning, applying a cross-sectoral and cross-country comparative framework and focusing on the workplace learning available within the first ten years of occupational careers in a particular sector. Sectors studied comprise of retail (studied in Flanders (Belgium), Denmark and Estonia), metals (studied in Bulgaria and the Basque Region (Spain)) and adult education (studied in Austria, England (UK), Italy, and Slovakia).
The symposium comprises of four papers. The first paper discusses the theoretical and conceptional framework applied for studying the interplay of individual and organisational bounded agency in a cross-country comparative manner. The framework applied for making sense out of differences in societal environments for both individual and organisation agency is presented. It also covers the common research methodology applied across the studies presented in the following papers. The second paper deals with early career workers learning in the workplace in retail, comparing organisations in Denmark, Flanders and Estonia. The third paper discusses workplace learning in the metal sector in Bulgaria and the Basque Region (Spain). The fourth and final paper studies workplace learning of early career adult educators in different subfields of adult education in four countries (Austria, Italy, Slovakia, UK).
Evans, Karen (2007). Concepts of bounded agency in education, work, and the personal lives of young adults. International journal of psychology, Vol. 42, No 2, pp. 85-93. Evans, Karen (2017). Bounded Agency in Professional Lives. In: Goller, Michael and Paloniemi, Susanna (eds). Agency at Work: An Agentic Perspective on Professional Learning and Development. Cham: Springer International Publishing, pp. 17-36. Fuller, Alison and Unwin, Lorna (2004). Expansive learning environments: integrating organizational and personal development. In: Rainbird, Helen; Fuller, Alison and Munro, Anne (eds). Workplace Learning in Context. London: Routledge; New York, N.Y., pp. 126-144. Koike, Kazuo and Inoki, Takenori (eds) (1990). Skill formation in Japan and Southeast Asia. Tokyo: University of Tokyo Press. Scott, Richard W (2014). Institutions and Organizations - Ideas, Interests, and Identities. (4th extended edition ed.). London: Sage. Tomaskovic-Devey, Donald (2014). The Relational Generation of Workplace Inequalities. Social Currents, Vol. 1, No 1, pp. 51-73. http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/2329496513514032
00. Central Events (Keynotes, EERA-Panel, EERJ Round Table, Invited Sessions)
Network 1. Continuing Professional Development: Learning for Individuals, Leaders, and Organisations
Network 2. Vocational Education and Training (VETNET)
Network 3. Curriculum Innovation
Network 4. Inclusive Education
Network 5. Children and Youth at Risk and Urban Education
Network 6. Open Learning: Media, Environments and Cultures
Network 7. Social Justice and Intercultural Education
Network 8. Research on Health Education
Network 9. Assessment, Evaluation, Testing and Measurement
Network 10. Teacher Education Research
Network 11. Educational Effectiveness and Quality Assurance
Network 12. LISnet - Library and Information Science Network
Network 13. Philosophy of Education
Network 14. Communities, Families and Schooling in Educational Research
Network 15. Research Partnerships in Education
Network 16. ICT in Education and Training
Network 17. Histories of Education
Network 18. Research in Sport Pedagogy
Network 19. Ethnography
Network 20. Research in Innovative Intercultural Learning Environments
Network 22. Research in Higher Education
Network 23. Policy Studies and Politics of Education
Network 24. Mathematics Education Research
Network 25. Research on Children's Rights in Education
Network 26. Educational Leadership
Network 27. Didactics – Learning and Teaching
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