Critical HRD: a concept analysis

Sambrook, Sally
Published 2009
Journal Personnel Review
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<B>Purpose</B> - The purpose of this paper is to provide clarification of critical human resource development (CHRD), an emerging concept that is complex, ambiguous and lacks clarity. <B>Design/methodology/approach</B> - To address this problem, the technique of concept analysis is employed to help clarify the understanding of CHRD. Concept analysis presents theoretical definitions and defining characteristics of CHRD, drawing upon an extensive review of research literature. Benefits and limitations of the technique are also explored. <B>Findings</B> - The concept analysis identifies antecedents, attributes and consequences of critical HRD. These include: personal and organizational factors; challenging contemporary practices, exposing assumptions, and emancipation; and more democratic work production, improved (working/learning) relationships; and improved creativity and productivity. <B>Research implications/limitations</B> - This paper presents an initial concept analysis of the emerging concept of critical HRD. This is not without difficulty given the complexity and ambiguity associated with the concept. It has been beyond the scope of this paper to present model and contrary cases of CHRD. Providing clearer operational definitions can assist researchers to investigate and evaluate critical approaches to HRD. <B>Practical implications</B> - Defining characteristics of CHRD can help provide clearer operational definitions to assist practitioners enact and evaluate critical approaches to HRD. <B>Originality/value</B> - The paper provides the first ever concept analysis of critical human resource development. The use of this method itself makes a new contribution to the study of HRD. This concept analysis provides other researchers, teachers and practitioners insight into what CHRD might be, through the identification of its attributes, what antecedents and actions it requires, and the possible positive consequences it might realise, thus contributing to new knowledge.


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Critical HRD: a concept analysis
Sambrook, Sally
Personnel Review
Document Type
Research article
Critical Thinking · Human Resource Development

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