THNK communities of practice

THNK communities of practice

Anthropologist Jean Lave and computer scientist Etienne Wenger coined the term ‘communities of practice’, inspired by their model of 'situated learning'—in which learning is not an isolated activity, but a process of social engagement. They described communities of practice as groups of people who share a concern or a passion, and learn how to improve or extend their impact through interaction. Think groups of artists, human rights specialists, tennis players—people join together linked by any number of social or professional disciplines. In reciprocal communities built on trust, we flourish with a perpetual exchange of knowledge. No matter what the common passion, we grow personally and professionally by sharing what we know.


Amsterdam’s class eight is almost at the end of their Creative Leadership Program. Alumni join the ongoing collaboration within the growing global THNK community, a phenomenon that we explored in Preserving the ‘We-Feeling’ of Online Communities—how can we discover and implement better methods of increasing community engagement?

In the spirit of Lave and Wenger, many within the THNK circle are banding together to create communities of practice. One of the first: THNK Health. Members meet virtually every few weeks to discuss their initiatives, progress and work in the sector, share leadership and job opportunities, and gain feedback and positive energy from others who are just as invested and deeply experienced.

Does your work intersect with this field? Join this growing community—their next session is the 9th of March 2016 at 15.00 (UTC+01:00).

We are interested in shaping further communities of practice in other fields also—for example on food systems, migration, and mobility. To get involved, apply for THNK’s Executive Leadership Program. Find out here if you qualify or  contact us at