Agile learning and management in times of crisis in the digital age: Actor-reality construction in the COVID-19 pandemic

Tuomas Korhonen, Fabio Magnacca, Ossi Heino, Teemu Laine, Jakob Liboriussen, Hanne Nørreklit

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterScientificpeer-review


This chapter focuses on the role of digitalization in how actors produce and use knowledge for agile learning to respond effectively to the COVID-19 pandemic (and other types of crises). The chapter draws on pragmatic constructivism as a framework for understanding actors’ construction of their relationship to the world. It argues that actors should integrate the four dimensions of reality (facts, possibilities, values, and communication) to be effective in their reality construction. Actor’s integrated reality construction is influenced by their capability to learn in an agile way. Empirical illustrations of actors’ responses to COVID-19 display how agile learning offers a basis to integrate the dimensions of reality quite effectively, while non-agile learning forms the development of non-integration. Indeed, while digitalization enables quicker information dissemination and support for agile learning in crisis management, such information can also either overcomplicate or oversimplify the operational environment, thus making quicker dissemination of mis- and disinformation possible as well. This chapter contributes to emerging knowledge on how different actors deal with crises from the viewpoint of digitalization in management, and how integrative, agile learning could be enabled by actor-reality construction.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAgile Learning and Management in a Digital Age
Subtitle of host publicationDialogic Leadership
EditorsDavid Kergel, Birte Heidkamp-Kergel, Hanne Nørreklit, Michael Paulsen
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9781003188728
ISBN (Print)978-1-032-03731-8
Publication statusPublished - 2023
Publication typeA3 Book chapter

Publication series

NamePerspectives on Education in the Digital Age

Publication forum classification

  • Publication forum level 3


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