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An enterprising phoenix: materiality, affect and learning

Journal Article


Abstract


  • Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to explore how workers experience planned and unplanned change(s), how the effects of change endure in organizations and the entanglement (Gherardi, 2015) of materiality, affect and learning. Design/methodology/approach: Research design is ethnographic in nature and draws from 30 semi-structured interviews of workers in an Australian organization. Interviews were designed to elicit narrative accounts (stories) of challenges and change faced by the workers. Desktop research of organizational documents and material artefacts complemented interview data. Analysis is informed by socio-material understandings and, in particular, the ideas of materiality, affect and learning. Findings: Change, in the form of a fire, triggered spontaneous and surprisingly positive affectual and organizational outcomes that exceeded earlier attempts at restructuring work. In the wake of the material tragedy of the fire in one organization, what emerged was a shift in the workers and the practices of the organization. Their accounts emphasized challenges, excitement and renewal, which prompt reconsideration of learning at work, in particular the entanglement of affect, materiality and learning in times of change. Originality/value: Much workplace learning research identifies change as conducive to learning. This paper builds on this research by providing new understandings of, and insights into, the enduring effects of change.

UOW Authors


  •   Rooney, Donna (external author)
  •   Manidis, Marie (external author)
  •   Price, Oriana
  •   Scheeres, Hermine (external author)

Publication Date


  • 2018

Citation


  • Rooney, D., Manidis, M., Price, O. M. & Scheeres, H. (2018). An enterprising phoenix: materiality, affect and learning. Journal of Workplace Learning: employee counselling today, 30 (4), 262-273.

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-85049144703

Number Of Pages


  • 11

Start Page


  • 262

End Page


  • 273

Volume


  • 30

Issue


  • 4

Place Of Publication


  • United Kingdom

Abstract


  • Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to explore how workers experience planned and unplanned change(s), how the effects of change endure in organizations and the entanglement (Gherardi, 2015) of materiality, affect and learning. Design/methodology/approach: Research design is ethnographic in nature and draws from 30 semi-structured interviews of workers in an Australian organization. Interviews were designed to elicit narrative accounts (stories) of challenges and change faced by the workers. Desktop research of organizational documents and material artefacts complemented interview data. Analysis is informed by socio-material understandings and, in particular, the ideas of materiality, affect and learning. Findings: Change, in the form of a fire, triggered spontaneous and surprisingly positive affectual and organizational outcomes that exceeded earlier attempts at restructuring work. In the wake of the material tragedy of the fire in one organization, what emerged was a shift in the workers and the practices of the organization. Their accounts emphasized challenges, excitement and renewal, which prompt reconsideration of learning at work, in particular the entanglement of affect, materiality and learning in times of change. Originality/value: Much workplace learning research identifies change as conducive to learning. This paper builds on this research by providing new understandings of, and insights into, the enduring effects of change.

UOW Authors


  •   Rooney, Donna (external author)
  •   Manidis, Marie (external author)
  •   Price, Oriana
  •   Scheeres, Hermine (external author)

Publication Date


  • 2018

Citation


  • Rooney, D., Manidis, M., Price, O. M. & Scheeres, H. (2018). An enterprising phoenix: materiality, affect and learning. Journal of Workplace Learning: employee counselling today, 30 (4), 262-273.

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-85049144703

Number Of Pages


  • 11

Start Page


  • 262

End Page


  • 273

Volume


  • 30

Issue


  • 4

Place Of Publication


  • United Kingdom