This paper sets out to examine the relevance of the learning organisation concept for NGOs and concludes that the ideas have significant relevance for the sector. The paper provides NGO staff with a conceptual framework for the subject – its purpose is not simply to describe the characteristics of a learning organisation but to encourage NGOs to examine their organisations in the light of these characteristics. For this reason the paper includes a diagnostic tool (the learning NGO questionnaire) which NGOs can use to assess their current capacity for organisational learning.
This paper seeks to stimulate ideas about how NGOs can rise to the challenge of learning from, adapting and continually improving the quality of what they do, if they are to remain relevant as agents of social change into the 21st century.



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