The Learning History method is developed by Art Kleiner and Georg Roth at the  MIT. I do research in theory and practice with the aim of developing (the use of ) participatory methods for change. By integrating methods as Naturalistic Inquiry, Group Model Building, Large Group Interventions, without jeopardizing the principles of the Learning History, I see these principles as:

  • Participation: Stakeholders of the central issue are involved
  • Flexible design: stages can be combined, repeated, circled through
  • Multi perspective results: ambiguity and power roles play their part in it
  • Systems thinking: thinking in patterns and dynamics of relationships in the system the organization "lives"
  • Connecting past, present and future
  • Social relations are made in shared experience, in conversations

As in Naturalistic Inquiry the findings in a Learning History process are created, not discovered, in a joint effort of the emergent construction (David Erlandson). The language we speak determines what we experience and in turn is driven by the categories we construct to make sense out of the world we experience. The shared constructions in conversations shape relationships. And the other way around (Patricia Shaw).

  George Roth:

"Through the learning history work, three separate qualities of an organization's experience have been found that need to be combined together to produce self-knowledge: The analysis and logical study of results and their causes; emotional and subjective connection with members' needs; and the archetypical recounting of the organization's heroism, trials, and destiny.

from Learning Histories: Using documentation ....