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Are “skills” all there is to learning in organizations? The case for a broader framework

Ian Cunningham (University of Sussex, Brighton, UK.)

Development and Learning in Organizations

ISSN: 1477-7282

Article publication date: 4 April 2008




The purpose of this paper is to provide an antidote to a narrow focus on skills and to show how learning for organizational development needs a broader framework.


The article is based on work done in a variety of organizations as well as published sources.


Governments and educational bodies too easily keep attention at the level of individual learning and also address only short‐term needs: organizations need to take a broader view.

Practical implications

The article has real practical implications for leaders/managers and learning and development professionals. Organizations need to consider learning from a more holistic perspective and not just pay attention to short‐term skill needs.


The article will be of value to managers and learning specialists as it raises important issues about the need to focus on this under‐explored problem.



Cunningham, I. (2008), "Are “skills” all there is to learning in organizations? The case for a broader framework", Development and Learning in Organizations, Vol. 22 No. 3, pp. 5-8.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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