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Showing posts from 2007

Video on Office Live Spaces

Scobelizer has an interesting video on Office Live Spaces. Nice video! I was wondering how this relates to Groove and Sharepoint? Is this just for "smaller groups"? Does anyone know?
Also refer to TechCrunch's review.

Blogging transparency

Hope you all had wonderful holidays! Back to blogging!Some time ago I posted on Jeremiah Owyang's blogging approach. I wrote a.o.:What I was thinking though was: isn't it too bad that these draft posts aren't visible in some way from the start? I'm not saying every idea should be public (total transparency), even if that is possible. But in companies it can be very useful to know that somebody's thinking about something and working on an idea. The 150 draft posts show that Jeremiah has loads of ideas that are not really ready to publish, but eventually they will or several draft posts will be merged into one. I think lots of people can relate to this situation. And a blog is a wonderful place to work on, store and publish them. So, wouldn't it be nice to have a way to publish a draft post (just the title for instance) to give your colleagues (or the world) an idea of what you're thinking about?Well at least Jeremiah liked the idea and sent all his draft pos…

Happy Holidays!

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I'm off on vacation. Going skiing! There's lots of snow in Switserland and the sun is shining. What more could you wish for?! Well maybe one of these "perfect snowball makers"!

I wish you all Happy Holidays and hope to see you in January 2008! I'll be celebrating my first blogging anniversary then!

Implications of the Latest PLM acquisitions

Interesting article about the latest PLM (Product Lifecycle Management) acquisitions and their implications. Although this article is focused on the automotive market, it has broader implications to other market segments. A couple of interesting remarks from the article:You could argue that now everybody has a few less choices; the market has consolidated to a few major players. (...)PLM technology is becoming less of a factor. PLM depth of coverage, how rich the solution is, is becoming more of a factor.And I think this remark about Dassault is most important. Being able to support multisite development, engineering and manufacturing is key. Plus being able to collaborate with non-engineers on one platform.Squire says MatrixOne lets Dassault grant access to detailed product definition to virtually anybody in the extended enterprise, and to standardize business processes that use that information across disparate groups, including non-engineers and other people not necessarily using c…

The New Semantic Web wave (5)

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I'll continue and round up my posts on "The New Semantic Web wave". In this post I'll comment on Alex Iskold's posts about the Semantic Web on Read/WriteWeb. The first post is titled "Semantic Web: Difficulties with the Classic Approach" and the second "Top-Down: A New Approach to the Semantic Web". First of all: Alex, thanks for the insightful posts and the historical overview of the development of the semantic web.Secondly, to my readers, please read Alex's full posts. Summarizing them for you would withhold you of a good overview. They're long posts, but well worth the read.
Now to my comments.I really liked the pragmatic approach ("simple semantics") to the long quest for the Semantic Web (refer to figure). I agree with your "new approach" too. Along with the examples you give, I find that Twine and Powerset are applying this new approach, right? They're doing "simple semantics", not waiting for fu…

First experiences with Powerset

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Some time ago I was invited to use Powerset, a new natural language search tool! I'll share my experiences with you.The user-interface is wonderful! It’s clear, not clogged, lets you type in comments without moving away from the page, etc. Here are two screenshots to give you an idea.When you start using Powerset you get to watch a couple of short video’s on how Powerset works, how you can use it, what the limitations of this version are, etc. Insightful, good expectation management. (By the way, why not let all be able to see those video's, while they're waiting for invites?)To give you a taste of how Powerset’s natural language search works they’ve created a set of queries to illustrate the power of their semantic index.The reference applications are limited to ‘speech’ (quotes), ‘business’ and ‘arts’.There's an application called Powermouse, which gives us a glimpse into Powerset’s natural language index and lets us see how it extracts structured facts from open tex…

Web 2.0 Framework

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Also ran into this older post (why didn't I see this before?!) on Ross Dawson's blog: the Web 2.0 framework. It gives a framework for Web 2.0, definitions of Web 2.0 and a Web 2.0 application landscape. Thanks for sharing!

Supporting structured and unstructured information processes

Wow, this is a really interesting post by Ross Dawson. I was trying to summarize it for you, but it's better you read it all!

It's related to the discussion about the 'enterprise software' being sexy or not. And about how ERP (Easily Repeatable Process) and BRP (Barely Repeatable Process) relate or don't relate. Some time ago I posted on this topic too, relating to the IT Flower by Innovation Creatorshere and here.

Relating to the IT Flower and my posts, I do find that the ERP (in Rinde's defintion) and the BRP worlds are distinguished too much in Dawson's and Rinde's post. I think one of the problems knowledge workers have, working in 'traditional' companies, is the daily switching between ERP and BRP or between structured and unstructured information processes. There is little or no support for this switching. The ERP and the BRP world in daily work is not distinct, but mixed.

What we do see though is the integration of e.g. Sharepoint with thes…

Waiting for...

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Every knowledge worker sends out lots of emails asking people/colleagues to do something for you. After you hit 'Send' you usually forget about the request. The 'Getting things done' method says you should keep a list of those outstanding tasks. I try to, but it's hard to be consistent... There is an Outlook plugin to make this easier.

However, just recently, a colleague of mine (thanks Roel!), pointed me to an even easier (and free) solution to this problem. Just follow the guideline and you're all set!

Automatically Classifying Unstructured Information

CMSWire posted that IBM updated it's Classification Module. It "automates the categorization of large volumes of enterprise information" and integrates with the FileNet P8 CMS platform. Well it doesn't automate it upfront: it gives suggestions and learns from corrections. You can find more information on this module here.
This is interesting stuff. Neatly organizing our structured information is taking up most of our time in organizations. But what do we do with all our corporate unstructured information (- assuming we manage this information centrally). This Classification Module can help us sort it out and check our taxonomy and classification.
One great use of such a tool is when a company worked on a certain topic, left the topic for some years and wants to come back to it. Where do you start reading and sorting through the information? Having this Module suggest a classification of that information could then be a big help.

I was wondering: Is this Module based on

The Semantic Web Wave (4)

Scobelizer shared this first-time demo of Twine. While waiting for an invite I'll chew on this!

UPDATE Dec. 18, 2007: Just watched the video. I'm really looking forward to getting my invite. This technology would be very interesting to use in companies. I think the limited scope would make Twine even more useful. Is Radar Networks thinking about offering an enterprise-version of Twine?

Beyond the Ordinary with Christmas...

Nice video on the O'Reilly Radar promoting the 'do it yourself' mentality and, in Océ terms, 'beyond the ordinary' with a Christmas flavor. Enjoy.

Blogging explained

It's already all over the Internet, but in case you missed it: a new Common Craft video explaining blogging.

Google's Intranet

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Some time ago I asked here and here how Google manages it's own information internally. I didn't get any answers (yet).
However now part of my question has been answered. John Batelle and ReadWriteWeb point to a Blogoscoped post on Google's Intranet! There you'll find a lengthy description of what it looks like, with lots of screenshots.

I found this quote about organizational transparency most interesting:
Ex-employee Doug Edwards mentioned how he came to take for granted everything was available on the intranet, "from the status of products in development to the number of employees at any point in the company’s history." He adds that the transparency was also a motivator, as "Your failures are also visible to everyone in the company, which provides an even greater motivator to continuously improve performance in the areas for which you are responsible." These days however, as Doug writes, Google "clamped down on who had access the complete stat…

Enterprise 2.0 Market Map

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FirstPartner is:
...a fast growing strategic marketing and research agency focused on IT, telecommunications and Media sectors.
Not too long ago they released an insightful "Enterprise 2.0 Market Map". You can download it for free. The overview it gives is nice. I also like the fact that it incorporate the "1.0" tools.

What I question though is mixing up "collaboration tools" and "document and records management tools". Actually, "collaboration tools" are not mentioned. For instance, Sharepoint is labelled a "document management tool". I would say Sharepoint (and IBM Workplace to mention another one) is about supporting (document) collaboration. It can only be used for light-weight document and records management.
Furthermore, an important category is also missing. CM, CRM and ERP are mentioned. But tools to support Product Data/Lifecycle Management aren't (e.g. Siemens UGS).

The New Semantic Web wave (3)

Interesting interview with Nova Spivack, founder of Radar Networks, on Twine, by the Downloadsquad.Twine is about sharing, finding and organizing personal information in one place in a new way. This app addresses information overload most knowledge workers experience. (Yes, there's money to be made here!, as Phil Windley says.) Spivack says Twine is the next step in knowledge management and communities of practice. All your personal information is tied together in one place. It's something in between Google and Facebook. Using natural language processing they can find places, people and things in your information.
You can search in your Twine network for relatedness. The search is based on a user-driven crawler.
Later on they will support importing all your information. Money will (possibly) be made using ads.
They are slowly letting people use Twine (I'm still waiting…).
Twine is about "knowledge networking" as opposed to "social networking".I'm wonder…

Slides on Technology/Internet Trends

This is kind of old, but interesting anyway.At the Web 2.0 Summit, on October 18, 2007 Mary Meeker (from Morgan Stanley Global Technology Team) gave their yearly presentation on ‘Technology/Internet Trends’. This presentation is packed with interesting data, analysis, etc. You can find a post on this presentation and the slide at ReadWriteWeb.
Some of my highlights from the presentation:Sheet 3: 3 Decades of Tech - Now = 2 Cycles
We’ve moved from Desktop > LAN > Internet > Cloud (broadband + wireless).Sheet 6: Consumer Demand for New Internet-Enabled Services/Products is Strong
- Technology is evolving faster than most enterprises’ ability to deploy new products/services.Sheet 12: Web 2.0 Driving Enterprise Growth?
- Next wave of corporate productivity gains should be paced by Web 2.0 driven collaboration tools that use the network as the platform to enable users to connect ‘any device to any content over any combination of networks’ (John Chambers, CEO, Cisco Systems, 5/22/2007)…

McAfee and Davenport debate on Enterprise 2.0

Really interesting debate between Andrew McAfee and Tom Davenport on whether Web 2.0 adoption will really change organizations. Davenport thinks they won't, McAfee says they will. Davenport asks, for instance: Is Sharepoint really different from Web 2.0 tools? Are these tools really new?

Surprising fact: McAfee says he doesn't read a single blog! Wow!

Also be sure to check out Luis Suarez's comments on the debate.

Productivity sessions

Joost pointed me to this interesting post on wiki sessions on the Workplace Blog. What are these sessions for?
The goal of the meeting was to educate peers about wikis and then talk specifically about the Avenue A | Razorfish wiki.This is interesting and it triggered me. Wouldn't it be nice to set up "productivity sessions" in companies? (Or do you already have them? Please share your!) In these sessions employees can share their ways of working, their way to be productive. For instance, how do you organize your email, your paper, your blog posts, etc.? At the company I work for we have done this by setting up a workshop on coping with information overload. But this was a one-time-thing.

I write for geniuses...

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A colleague of mine poked me and asked me to write for 'regular people' instead of "geniuses"... Thanks, Harold. ;-) It's not my intention to write for them, I'm don't see myself as one either. But anyway, here's the proof:


The New Semantic Web wave (2)

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Anyway, let’s get back to the new apps. I collected all kinds of information on these tools. Lots of insightful articles have been written on them too. Here’s an overview of the posts:About Twine:
Really short video about Twine.
Presentation on the Semantic Web and Twine.
Techcrunch review of Twine.
RoughType review of Twine.
O’Reilly Review of Twine.
ReadWriteWeb review of Twine.About Powerset:
Not too much posts about them lately. Wrote about them before here and here (and pointed to other posts on them). I’ll be posting again about Powerset soon!About TrueKnowledge:
ReadWriteWeb review of TrueKnowledgeAlso check out this panel discussion on the Semantic Web at the Web 2.0 summit titled ‘The Semantic Edge’ with demo’s (although you can’t see them…) of Radar Networks (Twine), Powerset and Metaweb (Freebase).Metaweb kicks of with a demo of Freebase. It’s about opening up the silo’s of data. And creating interconnections between them. We want to be able to operate over multiple systems. Freeba…

The New Semantic Web wave (1)

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There’s (been) a lot of buzz about new Semantic Web and natural language tools the last couple of months (sometimes called 'web 3.0'...). News about Radar Network’sTwine, Metaweb’sFreebase, TrueKnowledge and Powerset. (I got my invite to Powerset the other day!)This is very interesting. And I’m really curious whether these new apps will take us further than all the Semantic Web and natural language processing promises that were made in the nineties. Then semantic search was promoted and question answering, automatic summarization, etc. Semantic Web, language and speech technology was also hyped by companies like Lernout and Hauspie. After L&H came crashing down it seemed that natural language and speech technology turned quiet, was licking it’s wounds and looking for new approaches.With this in mind I was surprised by the fact that there are several companies attempting to address this market again. And practically at the same time. I’m always curious how this can be. How …

Podcasts about Web 2.0 and nakedness

Listened to some morepodcasts on the We are Smarter website.The first one is an interview with Ross Mayfield, “prominent blogger, co-founder and CEO of Socialtext”.He made an interesting remark about “the overall pattern in Web 2.0”. It’s: Share the control to create value.He pointed to two general best practices in this area:Refer to ‘customer stories’ on the Socialtext website for examples.And the wikinomics website on which everyone could collaborate to write the last chapter of the book. This is planned to be published soon!Later on he explained the ‘Inside-out approach’. There is a company that was using a wiki for internal product management and as a knowledge base for their callcenter. As they were developing, they asked why this information shouldn’t be accessible for the rest of the company, and even make it public. So they went on to open this wiki up. In this way all company employees can look in the database and help solve problems. Even customers that have …

Killer Innovations podcast on 'Innovation champions'

Dennis McDonald posted another five of his favorite podcasts. (Thanks for sharing!) One of them sounded interesting: Killer Innovations by Phil McKinney.

So, I listened to one of the recent podcasts about ‘innovation champions’. It’s about three questions: Who are the innovation champions? What to find them? And how to keep them? I’ll give you a short summary.

Innovation champions are the really passionate and fanatic people in your organization.
To find them: ask employees what they are working on and what they find exciting.
Make sure you offer innovator protection. Give them the authority to decide. This doesn’t imply that they have to lead the project, although sometimes they could. Also give them resources to realize their passion. But work with ‘constraint-based innovation’, which means: don’t give them 100% of the resources to help them focus.
Phil also gives an interesting creativity exercise. And you can join the Facebook group “Killer innovations”.
I subscribed to Phil’s blog and …

The First International Conference on Information Management

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How could I have missed this?! I thought I had all my information flows well organized... Next week Friday, the 23rd of November, the First International Conference on Information Management will be held in Amsterdam! They have an absolutely wonderful program with great speakers. The conference theme is 'Business Information Management. Is information management in need of a new identity?'.If you are going, please let me know. I'd like to get a copy of your notes/blog posts.An interesting fact for Océ (the company I work for) is the documentary that will presented to the public. It's titled: The CIO as strategic partner. And our CIO Peter Hagedoorn figures in this documentary. You can get a sneak preview here.

Google Tech Talk by Alex Wright

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Just started reading Alex Wright's book, Glut. Mastering Information through the Ages. It's really interesting and gives a wonderful overview of the history of 'information management'.
Alex also just gave a Google Tech Talk on his book. It's not a substitute for the book, but it's worth your time anyway.

Interesting fact: Xerox PARC coined the term "information architecture". (35:00) There mission was: "The Architecture of Information".

The Future of Work according to Manpower

Really interesting and nice video on 'the future of work' according to Manpower. Thanks for sharing, Brain Magierski!

National Knowledge Management Research meeting "Made in Holland" (12)

Daan Andriessen (Kenniskring Intellectual Capital, Hogeschool INHOLLAND): Metaphors for knowledgeDaan started out by say we used 159 metaphors for knowledge during this meeting. Examples are: knowledge sharing, flows, etc.! Daan is inspired by the “Conceptual Metaphor Theory” of Lakoff & Johnson. The use of metaphors is largely unconscious and they direct our thinking. Knowledge as abstract concept is primarily conceptualized by metaphor. It’s the only way we can talk about knowledge.When comparing the used of metaphors in knowledge management literature they found that:
- in the Western world (e.g. work by Davenport and Prusak) knowledge is used as an object, as a resource.
- On the other hand, in the Eastern/Asian world (e.g. work by Nonaka & Takeuchi) knowledge is used as thoughts or feelings, as an organism.So they wondered: What is the effect of metaphors on the discourse about knowledge management in organizations? Based on a workshop with managers and one with employees, …

National Knowledge Management Research meeting "Made in Holland" (11)

Ruud Janssen (Telematica Instituut): Coping with information overloadInformation overload is a popular subject. And for good reasons. Lots of media comes at use via lots of different ways. However we can only process a certain amount of information at a certain speed in a certain amount of time. This can stress people, which, in short, we call ‘information overload’. Refer to NRC article, Nov. 8, 2007: "Inbox overflow leads to less colleague contact".Following interviews and workshops, e-mail is usually seen as the culprit (ambiguous e-mails, e-mail avalanches, number of e-mails, etc.). They also found that some managers suffer more from information overload than others. This seems to result from the way they handle information overload. In other words: the way one handles information overload relates to how much you suffer from it.Furthermore information overload is not always experienced, but in periods of time.They focused on information overload coping strategies for e-m…

National Knowledge Management Research meeting "Made in Holland" (10)

Hendrik Kupper (WageningenUniversity): Knowledge policy in the sector Agriculture, Nature and Food qualityThe sector ‘Agriculture, Food and Nature’ has always been characterized as an excellent knowledge infrastructure and showed passionate use of knowledge by farmers and gardeners. However this has changed in the last ten years, initiated by the privatization of the knowledge institutes of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality. Now a new knowledge system is growing. All sorts of collaboration between knowledge institutes, companies, community organization, education and government is developing.The model of knowledge management in the sector looked like this:Know why > know that > know how - which relates to:Understand > control > do - which relates to:Create > exchange > utilize - which relates to:Fundamental knowledge (laws, theories) > technological knowledge (control/influence matter, people, organizations) > technical knowledge (recipes, etc.)In the past k…

National Knowledge Management Research meeting "Made in Holland" (9)

Lilia Efimova (Telematica Instituut): Employee weblogs: a knowledge management approachLilia is conducting her PhD research on ‘employee blogging’. She’ll present part of her research results here. This part of her research was published in Efimova & Grudin (2007), Crossing Boundaries: A case study of Employee Blogging.Weblogs are:
- used as a (personal) KM instrument
- passion driven, bottom-up tools in a (non-)business environment
- used as a research toolLilia investigated employee blogging at Microsoft (- at that moment 10% of MS employees were blogging).Why do people at Microsoft use work-related weblogs:
- To communicate directly with others inside and outside of the organization
- To document and organize their own work
- To showing the human side of the company (Within Microsoft employees are not asked to blog about why they’re proud of the company by their managers. They themselves want to write about why they’re proud and why things go the way they’re going. They don’t like to…

National Knowledge Management Research meeting "Made in Holland" (8)

Jose Kooken, Robert de Hoog, and others (University of Twente, IPIT, Politie Academie): Knowledge Sharing at the Police: Police Knowledge Net (PKN)PKN is (“push”) system that was implemented for daily use of the whole police organization to support knowledge and information sharing.This presentation is about how PKN is used and who uses it, why and with what success. What other sources does the police use for acquire knowledge? They observed police employees in several police units for one hour to define their knowledge need. A ‘knowledge need’ is defined as a need that one has for which he/she searches for and analyzes for longer than 10 minutes.The highlights of the observation are:
- the use of PKN, as part of all the digital knowledgebases, is approximately 12,5%.
- the most-used knowledge sources are colleagues.
- knowledge use reported in the survey was much higher than seen during actual work.
- 80% of the surveyed employees say they never have a knowledge question.
- the majority o…

National Knowledge Management Research meeting "Made in Holland" (7)

Daan van Tienhoven, Ebru Göçmen, Boudewijn Elsenburg (ErasmusUniversity, RSM): The influence of unit performance requirements on knowledge sharing between unitsIn their daily work they found resistance to share knowledge over business units and wanted to find out why. They investigated the relationship between two constructs:KPI’s/targetsknowledge sharingHow do the organizational goals influence inter-unit knowledge sharing?They defined several types of organizational goals:
- Quantitative-qualitative goals
- Learning-outcome - performance goals
They joined these two goals because quality relates to learning and quantity relates to performance. These do split into hard and soft goals. They found that hard goals, such as KPI’s (key performance indicators), tend to obstruct knowledge sharing, soft goals encourage and stimulate it.
- Less strict boundary goals (?? Didn’t quite get this one…) > There were no conclusions on the influence of this goal on knowledge sharing.
- Time horizo…

National Knowledge Management Research meeting "Made in Holland" (6)

Kees Vreugdenhil en Marijke Dieleman (Kenniskring Kennisorganisaties en Kennismanagement, Hogeschool Zuyd): Knowledge policy and sustainably continue (Dutch: “duurzaam doorwerken”) working in the mid-sized businesses in Parkcity LimburgParkcity Limburg (Limburg is a southern Dutch province, Parkcity is a group of cities in Limburg) is the first region in The Netherlands where ageing (“silver economy”) in the Mid-sized business is clearly hitting home hard. (90% of the employability in Parkcity is in Mid-sized businesses.)Therefore a project was set up to develop and implement policies to address the loss of knowledge due to retirement, to develop and implement an HR policy to allow employees to continue working if they are able to and would like to. Their preliminary results are presented today.They mention that what ‘graying’ really means, is not clear; we’re learning on the go. “The key is to use knowledge about age to manage it.” (Prof. Ilmarinen - He defined the 12 pillars describ…

National Knowledge Management Research meeting "Made in Holland" (5)

Marjan Grootveld (Telematica Instituut) & Anja van der Hulst (Cognitive Tools): Knowledge retaining at Thales.How do you retain critical knowledge in an organization (Thales) with many retiring employees? How do you combine strict need to know policy in practice with knowledge sharing? How can the internal training department and the group that trains customers learn from each other? How do you spread the knowledge retaining effort over the different business units?50% of employees at Thales are between 46-50 years old. And these people usually are life-long employees. Furthermore, the products (radar systems) Thales sells require 20-30 year maintenance and support.How to retain knowledge due to reorganization, aging, shorter careers, and outsourcing? They used techniques as interviews, story telling and knowledge mapping to analyze the situation at Thales.They found that knowledge retaining is really expensive. So, retain only company critical knowledge. ‘Critical’ was defined as…

National Knowledge Management Research meeting "Made in Holland" (4)

Vanessa Dirksen & Ard Huizing (University van Amsterdam): The Networking Knowledge Worker, Technology Appropriation and the Shaping of Learning PracticesThis very interesting presentation reports on “an ethnographic study performed in a large and distributed, knowledge intensive ICT company. It gives an in-depth account of the introduction of virtual communities in this organization and what happened afterwards. When confronted with organizational change ideas such as virtual community, people make sense of and appropriate these ideas to make them ‘their own’.”Basically they asked: What could or should knowledge management be? Why is the game Warcraft such a success as apposed to corporate Intranet for instance?They see to main approaches to KM: One from ‘Objectivism’, and the other from ‘subjectivism’.Objectivism says: Knowledge and information is a thing, product, etc. Objectivism: the philosophical tradition that for knowledge development we should view the world as consisting …

National Knowledge Management Research meeting "Made in Holland" (3)

Henk Smeijsters, Hans Koolmees & Sylvia Schoenmakers (Kenniskring Kennisorganisaties en Kennismanagement, Hogeschool Zuyd): Practical research and action learning in learning organizationsEncouraged by the government, the Maasland hospital of the Orbical (Dutch: Orbisch) Medical and Care concern is realizing the hospital of the 21st century. Part of this venture is the Patient-focused treatment (PFT), which should help this hospital evolve into a learning organization.The project developed a mental model of PFT rules of conduct, a PFT training and a method to embed it in their work. This is done in dialogue with the employees, using data collecting techniques, techniques for co-creation and natural inquiry techniques (such as member checking, triangulation, peer debriefing). Embedding in daily work is done using action learning, which is still work-in-progress.There are hiccups w.r.t. embedding: the employees don’t have much time, limited experience with ICT, big differences in ed…