Building Intellectual Capital by Generative Listening and Learning from the Future

Publication: Chapter in book/Conference proceedingContribution to conference proceedings


The purpose of this paper is to present two concepts, which can be well combined in order to build intellectual capital in organizations. The method of generative listening is described as a listening from the emerging field of future possibility and transformative conversation. It can be seen as the ability to generate or transform one’s own understanding and furthermore it can generate a new space of instructional activities. This type of listening moves beyond the current field and connects us to an even deeper realm of emergence. Peet et al describe it is a process of storytelling, listening, dialogue, and documentation that helps to identify and document the tacit knowledge embedded within key learning experiences. By having students generatively listen to one another, they learn how to surface, identify, and document their own and each other’s’ tacit capacities, strengths, and skills (Peet et al 2011). A very similar approach, the method of generative knowledge interviewing can be seen as a method of tacit knowledge retrieval, validation and sharing. Roughly speaking, classical learning theories argue that we learn from our past experience and adapt accordingly to cope with the future. Besides the classical theories several authors are proposing a second source of learning, thus a second source for knowledge creation: Learning from the (emerging) future (Greenleaf1977, Jaworski1998, Senge2005, Scharmer2013). Learning from the future signifies a heightened state of attention that allows individuals and groups to operate from a future space of possibility, in which they drop the non­essential aspects of the self and open themselves to new aspects of their highest future possible future self. It is an approach that builds on sensing, presencing and prototyping emerging opportunities. ...
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the ECIC-2015 (7th European Conference on Intellectual Capital)
Editors Juan Gabriel Cegarra Navarro
Place of PublicationReading
PublisherAcademic Conferences and Publishing International Limited
Pages165 - 172
ISBN (Print)978¿1¿910810¿00¿2
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Austrian Classification of Fields of Science and Technology (ÖFOS)

  • 502050 Business informatics
  • 509018 Knowledge management
  • 102
  • 509011 Organisational development

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