Space, the final frontier’? Social movements as organizing spaces for applying HRD

Jamie L. Callahan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


This article suggests a qualitatively different type of ‘space’ that fits the classic definition of what constitutes an ‘organization’, but that is frequently rejected as being beyond the scope of HRD because it does not fit preconceived notions of an ‘organization’. In this article, I describe how social movements are spaces analogous to organizations that can enrich our understanding of HRD principles and that may benefit from our professional experience in fostering learning and development for and within organizations. Using concepts of sensemaking in the organizing process (Weick, K. E. 1979. The Social Psychology of Organizing. 2nd ed. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications) and concepts of space (Foucault, M. 1986. “Of Other Spaces.” Translated by J. Miskowiec. Diacritics 16 (1): 22–27; Lefebvre, H. 1991. The Production of Space. Translated by D. Nicholson-Smith. Oxford: Blackwell), I show how the social movement, Occupy Wall Street, can be seen as an important site of HRD practice and research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)298-312
Number of pages15
JournalHuman Resource Development International
Issue number3
Early online date17 May 2013
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes


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