Learners participate in learning experiences in cohorts
of 25, facilitated by a faculty or mentor, as appropriate. Most
of their interactions are with the other learners, the repository
of learning objects and the knowledge management system. To acquire
new insight, they interact with their primary faculty/ mentor, other
faculty/ mentors who are available, and/or with artificial intelligence
agents that synthesize responses based on past questions and answers
on particular topics.
In upgrading the environmental sciences offering,
the community of practice decided the extent of the upgrade, the
changes in content and tradecraft to include, and the mechanisms
for providing just-in-time knowledge. The knowledge management and
instructional development staff provided insight on how to incorporate
these materials into learning objects and the knowledge management
Unleashing Creativity and
Creating New Patterns of
Work and Learning
Communities of practice are deploying new technologies
to enable new means of social interaction and coordination. Today,
proof-of-concept versions of these new communities are being developed
and refined. Over time, they will develop even greater amenity.
These new communities combine powerful knowledge management tools
with new interfaces and interactivity tools that make it easier
to engage in a wide range of community activities. Examples such
as Community Intelligence Labs (www.co-i-l.com)
illustrate how they facilitate the community interaction process.
With time, the new forms of social interaction and
coordination will unleash the creativity of the community members
and the distributed intelligence that resides in communities of
practice in tactic, explicit, and evolving forms.
In turn, this will enhance the new patterns of work
and learning that will be emerging from advances in knowledge sharing.
This circular process is self-reinforcing; new forms of social interaction,
creativity, and patterns of work and learning accelerate the development
and application of new technologies, which restart the cycle all
Evolving a Distinctive
While all enterprises have a distinctive knowledge
ecology, they also are part of a greater knowledge ecology that
extends beyond their boundaries. This knowledge ecology influences
the enterprise knowledge culture, since successful enterprises must
participate in knowledge sharing and exchange that transcends the
boundaries of the enterprise. However, every enterprise knowledge
culture has distinctive elements.