Unprecedented investment is being made in leadership development across the public sector: leadership courses are growing, and development is a core theme of organizational capacity building initiatives. Within this, action learning has attracted increasing interest as an approach that can simultaneously address individual and organizational development.
An impressive and scholarly collection, this book collates important examples and considers the evidence for action learning’s effectiveness. An important read for postgraduate students and researchers of human resources, training and development, this important book draws important insights to raise new questions concerning the role of the facilitator, the value of a ‘bilingual’ ability with public service issues and facilitation, comparisons with coaching and mentoring, and implications for employing action learning in a politicized or hierarchical environment and on a consultancy basis.
Table of Contents
1. Developing Public Service Leadership – The Context for Action Learning Part 1: Context 2. The Policy Context for Public Service Leadership 3. Optimizing the Power of Learning within Action Learning 4. Understanding the Organizational Potential of Action Learning Part 2: Practice 5. Local Authority Chief Executive Action Learning Sets 6. Learning and Leading; Action Learning for Chief Probation Officers 7. The Design and Evaluation of a Leadership Programme for Experienced Chief Executives from the Health Sector 8. Levels of Action Learning, and Holding Groups to the Experience 9. Developing Ourselves as Police Leaders: How Can we Inquire Collaboratively in a Hierarchical Organization? 10. Supporting Organizational Turnaround in Local Authorities Networks and Partnerships – Developing the Public Policy System 11. Developing Public Service Leaders through Action Inquiry 12. Partnership Action Learning 13. Action Learning in Inter-Organizational Sets Part 3: Conclusion 14. Action Learning in the Public Service System: Issues, Tensions and a Future Agenda
Clare Rigg is Senior Lecturer in the School of Business and Social Studies at the Institute of Technology, Tralee, Ireland. She previously worked at the University of Birmingham’s School of Public Policy and has used action learning and action research on a variety of organization development, leadership and management development programmes.
Sue Richards is Director of the Centre for Strategic Leadership at the National School of Government, London. She has performed a number of advisory and governance roles in relation to public service, having been a special advisor to various parliamentary select committees, an Audit Commissioner and a member of the Advisory Board of the Office of Public Services Reform.