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This book contends that the project of Critical Human Resource Development (CHRD) is to effect change/transformation, and that, as such, critical scholars must expose the injustices and inequities associated with the neoliberal narrative which forms the dominant rationality of current mainstream HRD practice. In other words, those that would change must first recognise that there is a problem worthy of being transformed. It is here that much of the CHRD project has plateaued; there is much theorising on dominant ideology, hegemony, power structures, and other artefacts of a critical agenda, yet there are comparatively few empirical explorations of the CHRD project that would facilitate practical engagement. This book offers a means to help progress CHRD from its current concern with problem recognition to a champion of meaningful change.

This book offers a series of chapters that provide examples of different approaches to engaging in interventions that allow CHRD professionals to challenge power structures, and, in turn, begin to effect change for organisations and employees alike. The chapters are clustered in three distinct approaches to thinking about, talking about and doing critical practice; thus, the sections of the book are titled “Reflecting”, “Voicing”, and “Enacting”.

Author Biography

Jamie L. Callahan is Professor and Director of the Human Resource Development Programme at Drexel University. She has held multiple leadership positions in the American Academy of Human Resource Development (AHRD), including having served two terms as a member of the Board of Directors. Jamie was also the Editor of Human Resource Development Review, the leading publication for advancing theory within the field of HRD. Her research agenda explores issues of power and privilege in relation to leadership, emotion management and organisation contextual issues (such as organisational learning, organisational culture, communities of practice).Jim Stewart is Professor of Human Resource Development at Coventry University. An award-winning researcher and writer, Jim has authored and co-edited more than 20 books, and numerous journal articles and conference papers. His research adopts a critical stance to theorising and practicing human resource development in order to achieve more freedom for individual life projects and support for challenging established societal and organisational structures which limit human potential and emancipation.Clare Rigg is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Liverpool. She has worked for a number of years with practitioners from all sectors, integrating action learning and action research into issues of organisation development, leadership and management development, and has researched and written on action learning, critical action learning, management learning and HRD.Sally Sambrook is Professor of Human Resource Development, Director of the Centre for Business Research and former Deputy Head of School and Director of Postgraduate Studies at Bangor Business School. Sally employs a critical and autoethnographic approach to HRD research, particularly management learning and doctoral supervision. She has published widely and holds various editorial roles on leading HRD, management education and ethnography journals.Kiran Trehan is Professor of Leadership and Enterprise Development at Birmingham University. She is a key contributor to debates on critical approaches to HRD, leadership, and diversity and how it can be applied in a variety of business and policy domains. Kiran has led a number of HRD initiatives and extensively published journal articles, policy reports, books and book chapters in the field. She is Co-Editor of Action Learning: Research and Practice, the first international journal dedicated to the advancement of knowledge and practice through action learning.
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