Action Learning/Action Research Competence
I have developed an international reputation for my contribution to the global develpment of action learning and action research in government, industry, education and the community.
Some of my significant contributions in this area are also covered under Capacity Building Competence.
My competence in this area can demonstrated by the following activities and achievements:
- development and leadership of the Action Learning, Action Research and Process Management Association (ALARPM)
- design and conduct of World Congresses and International/National Conferences
- contribution to the development of leadership and innovation in the University of Queensland through the design, conduct and evaluation of an action learning program.
- contribution to the development of action learning in the Vocational Educational and Training Sector nationally
- successful coaching of action research PhD and Master’s colleagues engaged on capacity building projects
- training workshops for consultants on the design, conduct and evaluation of action learning programs.
- development and editing of the international Action Learning/Action Research (ALAR) Journal
- workshop presentations on action learning/action research throughout Australia and in 5 other countries
- invited keynote addresses
1. Development and leadership of the Action Learning, Action Research and Process Management Association (ALARPM)
Founding Executive Member (1991) and President (1992-1998) of the Action Learning, Action Research and Process Manangement Association (ALARPM) – an Australian-based, international organisation dedicated to the global advancement of action learning and action research.
During my Presidency, ALARPM grew from an organisation of 10 Brisbane-based members to 300 members in 20 countries.
My contribution as detailed below also included the development of World Congresses and National/International Conferences and my role as Editor of the International ALAR (Action Learning/Action Research) Journal.
I was awarded Life Membership of ALARPM for my contribution to the organisation over more than ten years.
2. Design and conduct of World Congresses and International/National Conferences on action learning and action research.
I played a key role in the design, conduct and evaluation of four World Congresses on action learning and action research:
- Assistant Convenor and Treasurer – World Congress 1, Brisbane 1990
- President and Planning Committee Member – World Congress 2, Brisbane 1992
- President and Planning Advisor – World Congress 3, Bath UK.
- President, Planning Advisor and International Reference Group Member – World Congress 4, Cartagena, Colombia.
World Congress 4 attracted 1,800 delegates from 61 countries.
I was also actively involved in the design and conduct of other conferences:
- Planning Advisor and Committee Member for the ALARPM/UTS Sydney Conference on action learning and action research (1996)
- Conference Coordinator for the joint ALARPM/Singapore Institute of Management Conference on “Action Learning and the Learning Organisation”, Singapore (1996).
3. Contribution to the development of leadership and innovation in the University of Queensland through design, conduct and evaluation of an action learning program.
This consultancy project was the subject of my action research PHD study and is detailed under Capacity Building Competence.
4. Contribution to the development of action learning in the Vocational Educational and Training Sector nationally.
Member of a research team for a national project that involved development of a four volume report on Action Learning for Vocational Education and Training. This project, commissioned by the National Staff Development Committee (ANTA), involved case study research, a literature review, annotated bibliography and recommendations concerning the application of the relevant principles to vocational education and training. These reports formed the coursework for the nationally accredited Graduate Certificate in Action Learning and acted as a catalyst for the introduction of action learning throughout the Tafe Sector in Australia.
5. Successful mentoring of action research PhD and Master’s projects.
I coached a range of colleagues to successful completion of their action learning/action reasearch Phd and Master’s studies. Examples of these are given below:
- development of a commercial culture in BHP laboratories
- development of a HR consultancy organisation as a networked business
- development of an action research approach for a holistic health clinic
- values-based, performance improvement for a top four AFL Football Club
- manager development and business improvement in Australia’s largest aged-care facility
- development of career options for chefs at Conrad Jupiter Casino
- global development of collaborative learning centres for members of the Churches of Christ
- organisation re-design and productivity improvement in an Australia Post mail distribution center.
6. Training workshops for consultants on the design, conduct and evaluation of action learning programs.
Conducted, with my partner, 3 day workshops on designing action learning programs – Brisbane and Sydney. Participants in these workshops designed an action learning program for their organisation during the workshop. One particpant, for example, designed an executive development program for the Queensland Public Service.
7. Workshop presentations on action learning/action research throughout Australia and in 5 other countries.
Presentation of workshops on action learning and action research for managers, consultants, teachers, academics, PhD and Master’s students. I have presented papers and workshops on action learning and action research in Cartagena (Colombia), Sydney, Launceston, Adelaide, Brisbane, Auckland, Port Moresby, Singapore and Bath (UK).
8. Development and editing of the Action Learning/Action Research (ALAR) Journal
Senior Editor, ALAR (Action Learning/Action Research ) Journal (1996-1999) – a quarterly, international publication containing articles, profiles, project reports, information on networks around the world and the latest books and resources on action learning and action research. The concept for the journal was developed with Bob Dick and Paul Wildman.
9. Invited keynote addresses
- Distinguished Speaker Seminar on “Developing Innovative Managers through Action Learning and Action Research” for the National University of Singapore Guild, Singapore, 1995.
- Presentation on “Global Marketing of Education” for the The Australian Council of Private Education and Training (ACPET) , Melbourne – based on the global action learning programs offered through IMCA, UK.
- Keynote address for ATICCA ’98 (Australian Tertiary Institutions Commercial Companies Associations Incorporated), “Learning for Leadership and Sustainable Profitability“, Surfers Paradise – paper links leadership development, creative physics and action learning.
10. Publications on action learning/action research and capacity building
I have co-edited books, presented conference papers and published journal articles on action learning/action research. These publications are listed HERE.