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Library and Information Science Paper (ID LIS082023)

Fostering the Ability of Organizational Members such as Teachers and School Library Staff to Cooperate Based on Senge's “Learning Organization” Pphilosophy
No.82, p.23-45
Issue date

Purpose: The reason that education promoting utilization of the school library is not well established in the curriculum is the lack of systematic cooperation between schools and school libraries, even though the school library is a subordinate organization of the school. This study focused on collaborative interaction between teachers and school library staff (teacher librarians, school librarians), which forms the basis of cooperation between schools and libraries; examined learning abilities of each member of the organization; and considered methods of nurturing such abilities.

Methods: A review of literature on the management of schools and school libraries enabled the identification of factors related to diminished co-operation between teachers and librarians as well as educational programs concerning utilization of school libraries. Then, various organization theories were comparatively assessed to consider the theory best suited to improving the abovementioned factors, and Peter Senge's “learning organization” theory was selected. The abilities necessary for collaboration were then examined from this viewpoint.

Result: To foster collaboration among members of each organization, there are three core competencies. It is necessary to be able to: (1) foster drive, (2) carry on introspective dialogue, and (3) understand complexity. To cultivate such abilities, each member of each organization must develop five methods or disciplines, including (1) self-mastery: building an individual vision; (2) shared vision: building the group's vision; (3) mental modeling: overcoming stereotyping of individuals and carrying on conscientious dialogue; (4) team learning: creating team power; and (5) systemic thinking: identifying a target's essence by considering the whole picture. The results suggest that collaboration among members of each organization remodels schools and school libraries into learning organizations and creates inter-organizational collaboration.