Learning from incidents: applying the 3-P model of workplace learning

Murphy, V. L.; Littlejohn, Allison and Rienties, Bart (2021). Learning from incidents: applying the 3-P model of workplace learning. Journal of Workplace Learning (Early Access).

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1108/JWL-04-2021-0050

Abstract

Purpose
Learning from incidents (LFI) is an organisational process that high-risk industries use following an accident or near-miss to prevent similar events. Literature on the topic has presented a fragmented conceptualisation of learning in this context. This article presents a holistic taxonomy of the different aspects of LFI from the perspective of front-line staff.

Design/Methodology/Approach
The 3-P model of workplace learning was used to guide a thematic analysis of interview data from 45 participants, exploring learner factors, learning context, learning processes, and learning products.

Findings
The analysis was used to create a taxonomy of 21 aspects of learning, grouped into themes using the 3-P model of workplace learning. Many of the aspects of learning reflected previous literature, such as the importance of open communication. The analysis additionally demonstrated the interconnected nature of organisational and individual level learning, as well as how formal resources are needed to support informal learning in this context.

Originality
This study presents a holistic taxonomy of LFI from the perspective of front-line staff, addressing a known challenge of LFI literature being fragmented. Additionally, it provides examples of how aspects of organisational learning would influence individual-level learning and vice versa, adding to the relatively sparse number of studies that have explored this aspect. Finally, the paper highlights how informal learning in contexts where workers continually need to make sense of unseen hazards depends on formal learning activities and resources.

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