The use of organizational learning mechanisms: Environmental, managerial, and caltural correlates

Idan Barkai, Yitzhak Samuel

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


The present paper is an attempt to better understand the driving forces of organizational learning. The study rests on the premise that organizational learning is neither sporadic process nor an accidental outcome. As a matter of fact, organizations can effectively learn only by means of systematic collection, storing, analysis, and utilization of knowledge. Hence, the notion of organizational learning in this research is represented by a composite index measuring the extent to which organizations methodically apply a series of learning mechanisms such as those stated above. For the purpose of this study, 75 departments were sampled from two different organizations. One organization renders financial services, and the other organization provides military products. Data were collected by means of questionnaires administered to over 360 supervisors and their subordinates in those departments. Four hypotheses concerning the relationships between the nature of the departments environment, culture, leadership and the application of learning mechanisms were statistically tested. The research findings indicate that the application of learning mechanisms by a given department is correlated with its environment, its culture, and its leadership. However, those variables differ in their connection to the learning mechanisms. Taken together, the learning-supportive organizational culture is the key-factor and the best predictor of learning organizations. This study contributes to the body of knowledge on organizational learning by linking together internal with external sets of variables. Following this method, the study reveals how interactions between organizational and environmental variables affect learning processes.

Original languageEnglish
StatePublished - 2005
Event65th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management, AOM 2005 - Honolulu, HI, United States
Duration: 5 Aug 200510 Aug 2005


Conference65th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management, AOM 2005
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityHonolulu, HI


  • Culture
  • Leadership
  • Learning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems and Management


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