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{Excerpt} According to Etienne Wenger, communities of practice are groups of people who share a passion for something they do and who interact regularly to learn how to do it better. Communities of practice define themselves along three dimensions: what they are about, how they function, and what capabilities they produce. Each community of practice has a unique domain, community, and practice (and the support it requires). But, inconnecting and collecting, communities of practice share the following common characteristics:

• They are peer-to-peer collaborative networks.

• They are driven by the willing participation of their members.

• They are focused on learning and building capacity.

• They are engaged in sharing knowledge, developing expertise, and solving problems.


Suggested Citation

Serrat, O. (2010). Building communities of practice. Washington, DC: Asian Development Bank.

Required Publisher's Statement

This article was first published by the Asian Development Bank (