The Mature Stages of Development

Growing and Sustaining Communities of Practice

DURING ITS INCUBATION, THE TURBODUDE COMmunity regularly attracted an average of fifteen members. But after about six months, word spread that some of the company’s leading geoscientists were engaging in cutting-edge discussions about turbidite reservoirs. Attendance grew, averaging forty to fifty people per meeting, topping off at 125 people.

The meetings evolved to reflect that growth. A small group of ten regular members contributed most to the discussion. A much larger group of about thirty attended regularly. Some of them spoke occasionally, but most rarely, if ever, contributed. Although the people changed somewhat during the life of the community, ...

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