When Ioan Fazey at the UK-based Sustainable Learning project asked me to contribute a blog post, I took it as an opportunity to interview Digital Habitats coauthor John David Smith:
HS: And do you find that the perception of belonging to a community is correlated to a perception of learning?
JS: Well, one definition that Etienne Wenger talked about in one of the online seminars we did is that a community of practice is the experience of social learning that becomes expressed as a social formation. That’s a whole bunch of squishy but important ideas linked together. The experience of learning and the experience of connection can take place along different vectors. Whether I see myself as a member of the community might precede or follow other important kinds of acquisitions: of identity, of knowledge, or competence — or as membership in opposition to another community.