The unlearning dimension of organizational learning in construction projects

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)94-104
Journal / PublicationInternational Journal of Project Management
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2012
Externally publishedYes


It has been suggested that contracting organizations in construction projects do not seem to adapt resiliently under changing market conditions. Interestingly, recent organizational management literature reveals the essential role of practicing unlearning for generating more resilient performance improvement actions. This paper reports on a study that aims to test empirically the contingent effect of unlearning on the relationship between organizational learning (OL) and organizational success. A conceptual model which depicts the hypothesized relationship among OL, unlearning and organizational success is presented. Data were obtained from a questionnaire survey. To test the conceptual model, Pearson Correlation Analysis and Multiple Moderated Regression Analysis were employed. The study hypothesized that interaction between the practice of OL and unlearning have a moderating effect on organizational success. The hypothesis was only partially supported by the results of the MMR analysis. Only the practice of double-loop learning was found to be symbiotic with the practice of unlearning for achieving organizational success. The effect was found to be more significant when organizational success was evaluated in terms of meeting the client's expectations on project cost. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

Research Area(s)

  • Organizational learning, Project success, Unlearning