Project-based organizations encourage transfer of lessons learned within and across projects to avoid duplication and repetition of mistakes, save time and improve efficiency. Drawing on cognitive and situated learning theories, we conducted a qualitative inquiry into the process of learning from past project experiences in an international project- based organization located in Uganda. We studied how project team members at three regional offices of the organization create, capture and share project knowledge with a view towards organization-wide learning. After analyzing data from a web-based survey and personal interviews, we found that project knowledge is highly tacit and for the most part embedded in practice. Knowledge about the project was encoded in project reports and shared with clients as part of standard project process, however, knowledge of how the project was executed was informally shared within the project team and only with others on a need to know basis. Learning across project boundaries is difficult to articulate, therefore, project based organizations stand to benefit from integrating social interactions in their formal, structured learning systems.
|Keywords:||Cross Project Learning, Project Knowledge Management, Project-based Learning, Knowledge Sharing, Case Study, Knowledge Transfer, Project Lessons|
PhD Student, School of Information Studies, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Associate Professor, School of Information Studies, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada