(2010), "The time is now: service-learning as a tool for embracing uncertainty and change", International Journal of Organizational Analysis, Vol. 18 No. 2. https://doi.org/10.1108/ijoa.2010.34518baa.005Download as .RIS
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Copyright © 2010, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
The time is now: service-learning as a tool for embracing uncertainty and change
Article Type: Commentaries From: International Journal of Organizational Analysis, Volume 18, Issue 2
At present, our future is just as uncharted as it was a year ago but its challenges are now centered on economic, industry and corporate recovery rather than the eye of the global financial storm.
Unquestionably measure should – and hopefully will – govern the economic recovery phase however, it is wonderfully refreshing to see the job market strengthening around the globe and the finance sector’s return to underpinning innovation and growth through investment.
Historically, recovery phases are a time for opportunity. They are a time when innovation comes to the fore and governments, educators and industry can shape how we do things better. With this as a backdrop, we need to consider just how harnessing the benefits of service-learning can contribute to such an improvement. As a supporter of service-learning activities it is clear that connected education better equips us in many ways, including handling uncertainty. Similarly if these days all that is certain is change, then sense dictates that the narrow job training approach often applied in higher education is becoming less relevant.
The impressive articles contained in this collection clearly convey the need for real connectivity. In For which future? exploring the implicit futures of service-learning, Joy Beatty explores service-learning’s 40-year evolution from a social movement to a recognized academic teaching method. The focus on globalization and management learning techniques in Hogner and Kenworthy’s Moving forward together, in sustainable, effective, and partnership-oriented ways: connecting universities and communities through global leadership service projects is more topical than ever post-global financial crisis and with such issues as climate change occupying scientific and commercial debate.
Right across this special issue, the authors provide much food for thought and ideas as well as much to reflect on. I have particularly enjoyed the “journeying” further into service-learning through this commentary.
As I read through, it occurred to me that it is ironic that the more prepared we are, the better we seem to deal with uncertainty. For this reason and many others, right now service-learning is well placed to heighten its relevance and influence.
The Hon: Warwick Smith AM
About the author
Warwick Smith is a Chairman of the Advisory Board of Australian Capital Equity Group of Companies, Chairman of E*TRADE Limited, and Chairman of the Australian New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ Ltd) for the State of New South Wales and Australian Capital Territory. He is a former Executive Director with Macquarie Bank and was a Federal Government Minister in a Parliamentary career spanning 15 years. He received a Centenary Medal for contribution to philanthropic and community programs and The Order of Australia for his contribution to the Parliament of Australia, philanthropy, international trade, tourism and the telecommunications industry.