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Bresnen, M and Marshall, N (2000) Learning to co-operate and co-operating to learn: capturing knowledge of partnering in construction. In: Akintoye, A (Ed.), Proceedings 16th Annual ARCOM Conference, 6-8 September 2000, Glasgow, UK. Association of Researchers in Construction Management, Vol. 1, 313–23.
- Type: Conference Proceedings
- Keywords: human resource management; knowledge management; partnering; organisational learning
- ISBN/ISSN: 0 9534161 4 3
- URL: http://www.arcom.ac.uk/-docs/proceedings/ar2000-313-323_Bresnen_and_Marshall.pdf
Despite the enormous recent interest in partnering, existing research has not delved very deeply into the conditions affecting collaborative contracting over time. Yet many prescriptive approaches emphasise the importance of long term organisational learning and culture change processes. Based upon empirical research on case studies of partnering projects, this paper explores the relationships between partnering strategies, organisational learning and knowledge management practices. It argues that learning to co-operate in the long term is inhibited by problems in capturing project-based knowledge and expertise. The importance of tacit knowledge and individual and team skills further suggests that human resource management practices play a potentially crucial role. However, the research reported here highlights the characteristically informal, unsystematic, pragmatic and short-term approach to managing staff adopted on such projects. The paper concludes that these limitations have obvious implications for the long-term development of partnering strategies.