Cultural learning organizations

A management and organizational model.


Welcome to Cultural Learning Organizations Website

Eva Moraga



This website has a purpose: to show how cultural organizations can become innovative and creative organizations through their transformation in �learning organizations�.


In 2006 I submitted a long study titled �Cultural Learning Organizations: A model� to City University (London�UK) as part of the requirements for the award of MA in Museum and Gallery Management. This document was awarded Pass with Distinction.


This study analyzes the concept of �learning organization� and its possible implementation in any kind of cultural organization, through the analysis of a particular cultural organization as a case study. I recommend to read, first, the �Learning Organizations� Section and second, the �Cultural Learning Organizations� Section, because this was the order in which the original text was written.


Due to a lack of a consistent framework in existing �learning organization� literature to define and implement this notion, first, a new model of �learning organization� is proposed, grounded on previous literature, which tries to be a practical reflection tool for practitioners that want to put this concept into action in their organizations.


This model purports to organize �learning organization� values, principles, systems and processes in a coherent and pragmatic structure which integrates two main parts called: �the ethics of the �learning organization�� and �the �learning organization� infrastructure�.


Thus, a working definition for the �learning organization� is suggested. It is an organization, where in order to reach the common objectives and vision of the organization, distributed leadership promotes reflection (self-reflection and organizational reflection) and inquiry, participation at all levels and continuous sharing of knowledge, all of them supported by structural communication, individual development and participative decision-making.


Second, the proposed model has been used to analyze barriers and strengths of cultural learning organizations to �learning organization� completion. The analysis of a specific public non-profit cultural organization raised some specific questions related to these particular kind of organizations that have not been thoroughly studied by �learning organization� theory up to now.


Their project-based character, their �mission-driven� nature, their strong �expert� leadership and political, legal and economical constraints, among other factors, can influence the implementation of the �learning organization� idea in these organizations.


Consequently, the initial model was developed and a final model is proposed that can be used not only by cultural managers but also by other practitioners to reflect on learning and innovation in their organizations.