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Learning in adaptive spaces: how customer experience professionals experience learning during technology-mediated interaction, and implications for organisational learning

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

  • Tony Reeves
Publication date2018
Number of pages213
Awarding Institution
  • Lancaster University
<mark>Original language</mark>English


This research investigates how customer experience (CX) professionals experience learning through their use of digital technologies in organisations, and considers the implications for organisational learning. A phenomenographic methodology was used to compare the variation in employees’ experiences of learning, and the research employed a conceptual framework of post-structuralism and complexity to investigate how digital technologies affect organisational learning and knowledge management. Complexity Leadership Theory was used as a way to interpret the complexity dynamics that occur through digitally mediated interactions in organisations, and provided a way to conceptualise these interactions as taking place in ‘adaptive spaces’.

The research found that a lack of etiquette regarding the use of digital tools can adversely affect processes of meaning-creation during the technology-mediated work of CX professionals. The findings indicate that a more intentional use of technology – a ‘digital etiquette’ – can be viewed as a dynamic capability, and has the potential to improve the way in which CX professionals contribute to organisational learning. The findings also demonstrate that improving digital etiquette in adaptive spaces is an appropriate response to problems of knowledge management under conditions of complexity.

The research will be of interest to those seeking a clearer understanding of the potential of the CX function to contribute to organisational learning, and also to those aiming to design programmes of learning that prepare students effectively for complex environments.