If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it – Technology to support Communities of Practice (CoPs)

In thinking about Web 2.0 technologies and how they can support knowledge and networks within an organsiational context I think that there must be many considerations an organisation must consider before their introduction.   Going back to David’s earlier post “Supported” versus “unsupported” ICTs in a network age I had more of a think about it today.

I guess the old saying, ‘If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ still holds true.  And who decides this anyway?   Something that I have discovered, as Hildreth & Kimble (2004) point out, is that in the end, if CoP members are time challenged, they will revert to what works best, regardless of how rudimentary and simplistic the solution may seem.  It’s a strange world when, as Evans and Power (2007) suggest, that the tools that communities often end up using aren’t specifically designed for them in mind anyway.

I guess that there is always the danger that organisations will take a top-down approach and ultimately implement a technological solution that simply either won’t work or be adopted by the target audience.  If the ultimate aim is to build organisational capacity through organisational transformation and build organisational learning tools Web 2.0 solutions can help.  However, if it is to be done well, organisations would do well to approach the topic with the due diligence it deserves.


Evans, M. A., & Powell, A. (2007). Conceptual and practical issues related to the design for and sustainability of communities of practice: the case of e-portfolio use in preservice teacher training. Technology, Pedagogy and Education, 16(2), 199-214.

Hildreth, P., & Kimble, C. (2004). Knowledge Networks Innovation Through Communities of Practice. London: Idea Group Publishing.

About Paul Size

Currently studying a Masters in Learning and Development at the University of Southern Queensland.
This entry was posted in Me as a student, Me as a teacher. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it – Technology to support Communities of Practice (CoPs)

  1. Paul
    Good points. I know that when under time pressures I revert to the tools I can use even if they arent the best.
    Cheers Tracey


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