Organizational learning has been widely acknowledged as holding the key for companies to survive and prosper and has, in recent years, gained currency in construction management research. Much research centred upon the study of organizational learning as a process, as well as the view and understanding of companies as learning organizations. However, non-construction management researchers have recently begun to recognize the incoherence of the concepts presented in the literature and identified a lack of a solid theoretical and empirical foundation. To further exacerbate the challenge of embracing organizational learning in construction, the industry is largely project-based, thus increasing the difficulties for organizational learning to occur. Past research into organizational learning has also mainly concentrated on an intra-organizational perspective and where construction is specifically concerned, on project partnering. However, we regard such a focus to be myopic as a means of exploring organizational learning at the construction project level. As such, a number of research challenges are recommended including the need to examine organizational learning beyond project partnering; an emphasis on the inter-organizational dynamics involved in both the process and outcomes of organizational learning and the investigation of construction projects as learning networks.
The final, definitive version of this article has been published in the Journal, Construction Management and Economics, 23 (7), 2005, © Informa Plc