A corporate climate for learning: practices from National Library Board, Singapore

YEO, Zhe Benedict, MUTHU, Varshini P. and KAILANI, Idzhana (2013) A corporate climate for learning: practices from National Library Board, Singapore. Paper presented at: IFLA WLIC 2013 - Singapore - Future Libraries: Infinite Possibilities in Session 100 - Continuing Professional Development and Workplace Learning with Education and Training.

Bookmark or cite this item: https://library.ifla.org/id/eprint/112
Language: English (Original)
Available under licence Creative Commons Attribution.


A corporate climate for learning: practices from National Library Board, Singapore

National Library Board (NLB) includes ‘Working and Sharing Together’ and ‘Passion for Learning’, as two of five shared values it embraces, placing a high level of emphasis on the constant development of its people. This paper discusses how NLB manages to necessitate and motivate the continual acquisition of knowledge and skills in every individual. Structurally, one component of annual staff assessment consists of learning, thus every staff is expected and encouraged to learn. NLB also supports staff learning with its own department, the National Library Board Academy (NLBA), which conducts courses and recommends courses for staff. The paper talks about differentiated learning and self-directed learning in NLB. An employee is not bound by the limits of courses offered by NLBA; it is possible to take courses outside of NLBA. Individuals in the organisation are empowered to be agents of knowledge dissemination. Sharing occurs frequently on formal, quasi-formal and informal platforms. It may take place in the form of workshops, seminars, talks, written reports and communal activities. These platforms will be elaborated in the paper. NLB is a large organisation with a growing network of 25 public libraries and various departments. One challenge of large organisations is that employees are experts within one’s own scope of duties, but relatively ignorant about the responsibilities and operations of other departments. This paper discusses how NLB tackles this problem – employees partake in inter-departmental on-the-job training, so one experientially gains insight into another department’s scope of work. In all, this paper talks about various measures that NLB has in place in support of learning: Core Learning Infrastructure; Formal, Quasi-formal and Informal Platforms for Learning; and Beyond-the-position Learning.

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