What is social learning?


As explained in the glossary and list of acronyms page...

Social learning approaches help facilitate knowledge sharing, joint learning and co-creation experiences between particular stakeholders around a shared purpose taking learning and behaviour change beyond the individual to networks and systems. Through a facilitated iterative process of working together, in interactive dialogue, exchange, learning, action and reflection and on-going partnership new shared ways of knowing emerge that lead to changes in practice."

The value added for the CGIAR of the social learning approach is that it provides a way to address complex socio-ecological problems by integrating diverse knowledges and value systems at many different levels and through different learning cycles. Social learning engages relevant stakeholders in co-framing challenges at community, regional, national and global scales with the aim of mobilising technical, institutional and social knowledge to unlock the potential that can accelerate change. Social learning is step change because it is more than just a process of inclusivity, it is a continuous iterative process of co-learning.

As such social learning is therefore:
  • Purposeful
  • Involving multiple knowledges to collective reflection and collective action
  • Learning-focused
  • Iterative
  • Adaptive
  • Context-specific
  • Transformative, often beyond the individuals involved in it

For an easy introduction to Climate Change and Social Learning see the CCAFS CCSL Booklet