Chaos, complexity, learning, and the learning organization

Frans M. van Eijnatten (Department of Technology Management, Eindhoven University of Technology, Eindhoven, The Netherlands)
Goran D. Putnik (Department of Production and Systems Engineering, University of Minho, Guimarães, Portugal)

The Learning Organization

ISSN: 0969-6474

Publication date: 1 December 2004


In order to set the stage for this special issue, the prime concepts are defined: i.e. “chaos,” “complexity,” “learning” (individual and organizational), “learning organization,” and “chaordic enterprise”. Also, several chaos‐and‐complexity‐related definitions of learning and learning organizations are provided. Next, the guest editors' main thesis is presented, namely that the “chaordic enterprise” might be the goal state towards which a company – seen as a learning organization – might evolve, and that the framework of “chaordic systems thinking” could be used as a meta‐model to inform a learning organization which is capable of self‐organization and transformative change under hyper‐turbulent conditions. Finally, in order to illustrate the contours of a chaordic enterprise, the case of a dynamically reconfigurable, globally integrated, networked enterprise is presented.



van Eijnatten, F. and Putnik, G. (2004), "Chaos, complexity, learning, and the learning organization", The Learning Organization, Vol. 11 No. 6, pp. 418-429.

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Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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