The development of the field of HRD: a Delphi study

David McGuire, M. Cseh

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    62 Citations (Scopus)


    The study explored the views of leading human resource development (HRD) academics regarding five main issues: the disciplinary bases of HRD, the historical milestones in HRD, the constituent components of HRD, the leading contributions in terms of journal articles and books to the development of HRD and the future of HRD. Design/methodology/approach - A Delphi methodology was adopted. The views of editorial board members of the four main HRD journals (Human Resource Development Quarterly, Human Resource Development International, Advances in Developing Human Resources, Human Resource Development Review) and of the Board of Directors of the Academy of Human Resource Development were sought. Findings - Adult learning, systems theory and psychology were identified as the disciplinary bases of HRD. Works by Knowles, Nadler and McLagan were viewed as the leading contributions to the field. Adjusting to changes in work patterns and how work is organized was identified as a key trend influencing the field. Issues of professionalisation and balancing the needs of employees, organizations and society were identified as the key challenges facing the field. Originality/value - Examines key trends and challenges facing HRD
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)653-667
    Number of pages15
    JournalJournal of European Industrial Training
    Publication statusPublished - 2006


    • human resource development
    • Delphi
    • methodology
    • discipline
    • curricula


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