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Title: Organisational learning and police change : PSNI's response to policing with the community
Author: Howarth, Jonathan J.
ISNI:       0000 0004 5988 9799
Awarding Body: Queen's University Belfast
Current Institution: Queen's University Belfast
Date of Award: 2015
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This longitudinal qualitative study explores how the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) responded to prescribed transformational change. Adopting a processual view, it examines the role and nature of organisational learning over 8 years as a chronological case study. Findings address Hendry's (1996) proposal that a balance of approaches to organisational learning is required for more effective change. Qualitative techniques, triangulated documentary analysis, semi-structured interviews and participant observation acquired a rich data set laden with first hand accounts from a diverse respondent sample, including frontline practitioners. A broad synthesis of organisational learning, 'Learning Organisation', organisational knowledge and Knowledge Management literatures presents a comprehensive range of social learning activities and management solutions for facilitating earning. Expanding previous concerns, inductive analysis revealed a range of respective issues and weaknesses often specific to the internal conditions of discontinuous change. An examination of a novel police project reifies Hendry's (1996) notion of a 'balance', which, as an 'organisational learning intervention, used mechanisms to facilitate officers' social learning processes in the coproduction of solutions to both the challenges emanating from constant change and gaps in management policy. Overall, this research establishes the relevance and significance of organisational learning in policing, especially as a means of sustaining legitimacy with the external environment. Three contributions are made to the organisational learning, police and change literatures: i) illuminates a unique case of transformational police change, particularly the challenges facing multiple tiers of the hierarchy; ii) provides an in-depth understanding of the role, nature and inhibitors of organisational learning in a police organisation undergoing transformation; and, iii) Hendry's (1996) proposal is reified in a model of Context, Knowledge Activism, Support and Methodology. This model uniquely posits a reconciliation of social learning processes with a deductive management style, which temporarily aligned social learning activities to the needs of he organisation.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available