Institutions and Institutional Work
Thomas B. Lawrence and Roy Suddaby (2006) Institutions and Institutional work. In Stewart R. Clegg, Cynthia Hardy, Thomas B. Lawrence & Walter R. Nord (Eds.) Sage Handbook of Organization Studies, 2nd Edition: 215-254. London: Sage.
40 Pages Posted: 2 Jul 2018
Date Written: June 16, 2006
Institutional approaches to organization studies focus attention on the relationships among organizations and the fields in which they operate, highlighting in particular the role of rational formal structures in enabling and constraining organizational behaviour. A key contribution of institutional studies has been the development of strong accounts of the processes through which institutions govern action. This has been accomplished in part through theoretical statements which have delineated key sets of concepts and relationships that tie institutional structures and logics to organizational forms and conduct (Meyer and Rowan 1977; DiMaggio and Powell 1983; Greenwood and Hinings 1996). Also key in the development of institutional understandings of organizational action has been the large set of empirical studies that have documented the connections among institutions, fields and organizations. These studies have catalogued the impact of institutional forces in a wide variety of sectors and geographic contexts, and at varying levels of analysis including intra-organizational (Zilber 2002), interorganizational (Leblebici et al. 1991) and international (Keohane 1989; Meyer et al. 1997). Finally, there has emerged an influential set of reviews of institutionalism in organization studies that have summarized and synthesized the major work in the area into coherent frameworks (DiMaggio and Powell 1991; Tolbert and Zucker 1996; Scott 2001; Schneiberg and Clemens 2006).
Keywords: institutional work
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