The cultural web, higher education and work-based learning

Doherty, Oran and Stephens, Simon (2020) The cultural web, higher education and work-based learning. Industry and Higher Education, 34 (5). pp. 330-341. ISSN 0950-4222


This article explores the key challenges experienced by employers, employees and academics during work-based learning (WBL) programmes. Higher education institutes (HEIs) and external employer organizations are increasingly recognizing the benefits of engaging in WBL partnerships. These collaborations offer significant benefits to employers, employees and HEIs. The challenges associated with WBL place demands on the design of curriculum, pedagogy and accreditation. One of the major challenges facing the HEI and employer organization relates to organizational culture. The purpose of this article is to present an organizational culture web that recognizes the requirements of all stakeholders participating in a WBL partnership. An ethnographic methodology combining a number of different data-gathering methods was adopted. Johnson’s cultural web is used as a framework to present a series of recommendations for HEIs to review when considering WBL partnerships. The understanding of best practice in the design of WBL programmes is enriched.

View Item