Sustaining Sweden’s competitive position: lean lifelong learning
2015 (English)In: Measuring Business Excellence, ISSN 1368-3047, E-ISSN 1758-8057, Vol. 19, no 1, 92-102 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to explore what options the adult learner has for continued learning and what role universities are playing in providing net-based education. Current options for lifelong learning and improvement opportunities in the educational process are described based on an assessment inspired by principles of lean management.
Design/methodology/approach – Sweden is chosen as an example. The current level of net-based university education and the demand for it is assessed using official Swedish data. Lean management principles are used as a starting point to define parameters for interest for the adult learner. These parameters are then converted into a five-level scale for assessing current performance with focus on university courses. The authors also study how Swedish County Councils manage their employee education and carry out a check of courses offered by massive open online course providers.
Findings – Lean management principles in combination with customer focus seem to present relevant parameters for assessing distance education. Preliminary results indicate that lean lifelong learning has a considerable improvement potential. The main reasons for this potential seem to be more of a bureaucratic and political nature, whereas technology and resources appear to be less of an issue.
Practical implications – The results have implications for both universities and organisations. The pressure on universities to become more customer-focussed, while at the same time, cost-effectiveness is likely to increase.
Originality/value – Using the customer perspective for educational services and applying lean principles to education.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 19, no 1, 92-102 p.
Lifelong learning, Organisational learning, Competence development
Engineering and Technology Economics and Business
Research subject Engineering Science with specialization in industrial engineering and management
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-267289DOI: 10.1108/MBE-11-2014-0045OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-267289DiVA: diva2:872626