OMT WebOrganization and Management Theory Division of the Academy of Management
The George R. Terry Book Award recognizes the books judged to have made the most outstanding contribution to the advancement of management knowledge. In 2013, the selection committee presented one of two awards to Patricia Thornton, William Ocasio, and Michael Lounsbury for their book, The Institutional Logics Perspective: A New Approach to Culture, Structure, and Process.
Congratulations on receiving the 2013 Terry Book Award! To begin, what inspired you to write the book?
Institutional theory had such a renaissance in the late 1970s, but aside from the concept of decoupling and isomorphism theory, it was not developing systematically. The catholic approach to the development of the neoinstitutional theory in the context of the same old debates, rational versus non-rational, legitimacy versus efficiency, and social structure versus action were filling-up pages, but were not progressing. There was a conference at the University of Arizona that Pat attended to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the publication of DiMaggio and Powell (1983). One of the graduate students asked what’s next. In 2006 there was a conference call from the group at the University of Alberta with the header, “Is Institutional Theory Dead.” Interestingly it wasn’t, it’s just that, in our judgment, it wasn’t alive and well in organization theory. In spite of the mounting research on institutional logics, the perspective was not fully embraced by the reigning organization theory authors. At the Alberta conference in 2009, it was clear that the three of us had prior work on logics and so Pat suggested it seemed right to team up to pool our collective wisdom, and perhaps to write a book.
First, we held a Professional Development Workshop at the 2009 Academy of Management meetings and elicited the help of Rudy Durand, Mary Ann Glynn, Candy Jones, and Barbara Townley—this PDW had standing room only so we had the momentum of the field pushing us. We wanted to synthesize and propose theory and to build on, yet depart from neo-institutional theory in significant ways to solve some of its problems, particularly that of homogeneity and stasis. For us, logics were the tools of change in many ways. But, our aim was not to revive institutional theory, but to transform it. After the PDW, it was clear that a book was needed, and we began working on it.
Were there any surprises you encountered during the writing process? From your perspectives, what were the most novel ideas that emerged as you wrote the book?
We had several meetings at the Academy and off campus and had pretty free ranging discussions among the three of us. We wouldn’t say there were surprises as much as rigorous debates—learning opportunities for all. For example, Mike brought up the point that community was missing from the inter-institutional system typology in the Thornton (2004) book. We debated whether community was a distinct institutional order or an element of an institutional logic. That is, is the concept of community best theoretically represented on the X axis (as an order) or on the Y axis (as a categorical element of a logic). Pat brought up what to do with the field concept from neoinstitutional theory as the initial theoretical formulation by Friedland and Alford (1991) focused on three levels of analysis, society, organizations, and individuals – and fields were their springboard for a critique. While difficult to define a field boundary, we ended the debate thinking the field concept should be integrated into the institutional logics work because it incorporated networks and resource dependencies across domains, ideas useful to theories of change, not isomorphism as previously envisioned.
Keep in mind the institutional logics perspective is a meta-theory of institutions that includes organizations as only one level of analysis. Unlike neoinstitutional theory, everything is not funneled through or by organizations. Perhaps the most novel ideas were new ways to think about 1) linking the micro and the macro and the cross-level relationships, 2) developing the idea that institutional logics is a meta-theory and so it is the subject of other theories and their culturally contingent effects, ideas that had been introduced in Thornton and Ocasio (1999), chapter 8 of Thornton (2004) and Thornton and Ocasio (2008), and 3) developing the concept of the inter-institutional system and its nearly decomposable nature by connecting it to the tool kit perspective which was initially introduced in the Thornton (2004:40) book. The last point provides a way to decouple logics from their institutional orders like flexible bits of culture and Mary Ann Glynn (2013) pinned this as one of the biggest contributions. This provided institutional theory with a way to understand the sensibilities of multi-level actors and their “actions.” While Paul DiMaggio in the late 90s foreshadowed bringing together culture and cognition and drawing on social and cognitive psychology, Willie’s (Ocasio, 1997; Nigam and Ocasio, 2010; Loewenstein, Ocasio, and Jones, 2012) work on attention, sensemaking, and vocabularies helped to flesh out these micro and cross-level mechanisms. Mike’s work with Chris Marquis (Lounsbury, 2007; Marquis and Lounsbury, 2007) on community and with Ellen Crumley (Lounsbury and Crumley, 2007) on material practices and identities was central to linking intra-organizational and organization-level dynamics with the societal. Pat’s ideas in chapter 5 linking individuals, such as entrepreneurs, and societal level institutional logics were important to work on embedded agency and the modularity and change in institutions.
Have you been able to bring the concept of institutional logics into the classroom? If so, describe your experiences.
Easily so at the Ph.D level as it addresses the critique of neo-institutional theory and is a systematic way to measure and show the effects of culture in organization and strategic management theories. Pat uses institutional logics in teaching the social science of entrepreneurship to undergraduate and masters level students. It’s not much of a stretch to develop the institutional biographies of the three entrepreneurs, Penney, Ettinger and Sperling, in chapter 5. This triptych can easily be molded into an MBA style teaching case to illustrate one way entrepreneurs get their ideas and sell them to an audience. Given that logics represent frames of reference that condition actors’ choices for sense making, the vocabularies they use to motivate action and their sense of identity—there should be ample ways to bring the perspective into teaching modalities. Willie is using this implicitly in his MBA course on Power in Organizations, and is currently working on integrating it more explicitly into the curriculum for that course.
What future research conversations do you hope will emerge from the book? Do you see the logics perspective influencing managerial practice?
In chapter 8 we talk about future applications of the institutional logics perspective. There are many directions the logics literature can grow—we identify a few.
In management we could see new applications to understanding organizational culture in multi-national corporations. In strategy, the logics perspective could breathe new life into the dominant logic literature by showing the origins of dominant logics and how they can change. It would be fruitful to link to the interesting work on morality and “social value,” and its implications for positive social change in the context of private and nongovernmental organizations, particularly given that the neoliberal welfare state seems on decline. In our parlance the rising tide of the market logic which points the finger particularly at the failure of the professions to defend their original mission. It’s a short jump from thinking of logics as a source of legitimacy to thinking of logics as a way to justify behavior. We would argue that the institutional logics perspective offers much to U.S. cultural sociology and the French conventionalists in that it is a relatively ideologically agnostic or systematic perspective. After all, the winners of legitimacy struggles and justification contests are not always the most moral and worthy. There is not much work on family and religion outside of Greenwood and colleagues work that shows these institutional orders have an effect on organizational decision making, particularly outside the United States (Greenwood et. al., 2010). Work is needed on objects and spaces. Voronov & Vince (2012) and Friedland (2012) suggest the need to understand the role of emotions and love. We are hoping to see an affinity with the new experimentalism in institutional theory being spearheaded by Alex Bitektine, Patrick Vermeulen, Vern Glaser, and colleagues. There is new work to be done with how logics affect how individuals engage, find meaning, and take actions in their jobs and organizational settings, in terms of logics and organizational design, logics and practices, and logics and identity (Glynn, 2013; Glynn and Giorgi, 2013). There is already a new edited volume out by Mike Lounsbury and Eva Boxenbaum on Institutional Logics in Action. Health care is one area that institutional logics may have explicit managerial implications. Willie and Vanessa Pouthier are examining how hospitals develop new modes of collaboration given plural institutional logics.
Finally, any other comments or thoughts about the book that you’d like to share with the readers of our OMT blog?
Our goal in writing the book was to move neoinstitutional theory beyond shopworn debates and the study of isomorphism. We wanted to build a community of colleagues to open new avenues of research—so we hope to continue to develop the perspective. A point of confusion in the literature concerns what is the difference between an institutional order and an institutional logic. This is something we want to clarify in future writing. The condensed response is that the orders are ideal prototypes of how society is organized. The logics are how these orders get instantiated by actors. Institutional logics can be constituted from categorical elements of different institutional orders, and modified through local variations in practices and sensemaking. This question will take some unpacking before it is ready for press. It is exciting times for institutional analysis.
All Winners of the 2013 Terry Book Award
Glynn, M. 2013. Book Review, The Institutional Logics Perspective: A New Approach to Culture, Structure, and Process, Administrative Science Quarterly,
Glynn, M and S. Giorgi 2013. Book Review, Taking the Cultural Turn: Reading Cultural Sociology, Academy of Management Review, 38: (2) 466-470.
Greenwood, R., A. Dias, M. Li, X. Stan, J. Lorente 2010. “The Multiplicty of Institutional Logics and the Heterogeneity of Organizational Responses,” Organization Science, 21: 521-39.
Friedland, R. and R. Alford, 1991. “Bringing Society Back In: Symbols, Practices, and Institutional Contradictions,” In Walter W. Powell and Paul J. DiMaggio (eds.) The New Institutionalism in Organizational Analysis, pp. 232-62, Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Friedland, R. 2012. Book review, The Institutional Logics Perspective. M@n@gement, 15 (5): 582-595.
Lounsbury, M. 2007. “A Tale of Two Cities: Competing Logics and Practice Variation in the Professionalizing of Mutual Funds,” Academy of Management Journal, 50: 289-307.
Lounsbury, M. and E. T. Crumley, 2007. “New Practice Creation: An Institutional Approach to Innovation,” Organization Studies, 28: 993-1012.
Lounsbury, M. and E. Boxenbaum 2013. “Institutional Logics in Action,” Research in the Sociology of Organizations, vol. 39A&B, Emerald.
Lowenstein, J. W. Ocasio, and C. Jones, 2012. “Vocabularies and Vocabulary Structure: A New Approach Linking Categories, Practices and Institutions,” Academy of Management Annals.
Marquis, C. and M. Lounsbury, 2007. “Vive la Resistance: Competing Logics and the Consolidation of U.S. Community Banking,” Academy of Management Journal, 50: 799-820.
Nigam, A. and W. Ocasio, 2010. “Event Attention, Environmental Sensemaking, and Change in Institutional Logics: An Inductive Analysis of the Effects of Public Attention to Clinton’s Health Care Reform Initiative,” Organization Science, 21: 823-41.
Ocasio, W. 1997. “Towards an Attention-Based View of the Firm,” Strategic Management Journal,” 18:187-206.
Thornton, P. H. and W. Ocasio, 1999. “Institutional Logics and the Historical Contingency of Power in Organizations: Executive Succession I the Higher Education Publishing Industry, 1958-1990,” American Journal of Sociology, 105: 801-43.
Thornton, P., H. 2004. Markets from Culture: Institutional Logics and Organization Decisions in Higher Education Publishing. Stanford, CA. Stanford University Press.
Thornton, P. H. and W. Ocasio, 2008. “Institutional Logics,” In R. Greenwood, C. Oliver, K Sahlin-Andersson, and R. Suddaby (eds.) The Sage Handbook of Organizational Institutionalism, pp. 99-129. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Voronov, M. and Vince, R. 2012. “Integrating Emotions into the Analysis of Institutional Work,” Academy of Management Review, vo. 37: 58-81.
Interview by Madeline Toubiana (Schulich School of Business, York University)
The 2013 OMT Division's Best Paper on Social and Environmental Practices went to Juliane Reinecke (University of Warwick) and Shaz Ansari (University of Cambridge) for their paper “Be Fair or Care? Fairtrade and the Standardization of Ethical Practices.” Congratulations to them both! In this interview they reflect on the paper and winning the award.
The best paper on Social and Environmental Practices is a relatively new addition to the OMT awards highlighting the growing importance of this topic area in OMT. How does the focus of your paper touch on these issues? What was the inspiration for the paper?
There were many inspirations for this paper, but one of them was that at the time of writing I was teaching Business Ethics at Warwick Business School. In the course we examine how different ethical theories can help us understand moral challenges and dilemmas in contemporary business. The course attracts students from business, philosophy, economics, law as well as many exchange students, and we have great debates about advantages and difficulties with each theory. What is ethical or fair differs depending on which lens you take. This was part of the inspiration for the dialogue between Habermasian discourse ethics and Feminist ethics of care that is developed in the paper.
What were some of the challenges you faced during the process of developing this paper? (Can be in data collection, theorizing, writing..)
Making sense of ethnographic data was very challenging, because it is an inductive process requiring a very intense relationship with the data. The process of analyzing it never really stopped and there are so many fascinating puzzles to explore which all seem to be connected to each other. What we focus on in the paper - the question of ethical reasoning and whether it can be seen from an impartial standpoint, or from that of an embedded and inherently partial participant - was a pervasive theme that ran through the data and came up again and again. The challenge was to translate the complexity and richness of being a participant observer into paper format. That was a struggle, but a productive one.
What surprised you most about your findings? What kind of implications do you think your work has for the future of fairtrade practice and/or policy?
A multi-stakeholder setting is typically perceived as a democratic process of consensus building. But if you look at it more closely (as we did in the paper), it is a very contentious process. What is ethical and fair is different for every participant in the process, so consensus is guided by some rules, in our case rules about fair price setting. But the complexity of what is ethical and fair cannot be contained by any 'objective' and 'impartial' rule but requires values-based decisions. Ethics is, to use the words of the pragmatist philosopher James "unfinished, growing in all sorts of places, especially in the places where thinking beings are at work". The practice to certify ethics, made visible through a label, hides many ethical debates and questions. Ethical labels should open up ethical questions, rather than pretending they have solved them.
What were you both doing when you found out you won the award? Could you share a little about what this prize means to the both of you?
It was towards the end of spring term, I was just very busy with teaching. When I saw Candace Jones' email in my inbox I first couldn't believe it! It was unexpected but absolutely amazing. In particular because when I started working on Fairtrade for my PhD research in 2007, some people challenged me for this choice of topic. Since then, a growing community has emerged and many great papers have pushed scholarship on such issues. So this award is an important recognition that research on social and environmental issues is a key area of scholarship in our community.
Do you have any suggestions for other scholars hoping to win this award?
You might need to ask the jury what they are looking for, but a good start would be with the question of how organizational theory can contribute to developing a better understanding of the challenges and solutions to the tremendous social and environmental challenges we are facing.
Tags: awards | Juliane Reinecke | Practices Shaz Ansari
The University of Massachusetts Boston
College of Management
PhD in Business Administration, Organizations and Social Change
The Organizations and Social Change (OSC) track responds to the growing interest in issues at the intersection of business and society, such as climate change, workforce diversity, economic development, governance, inequality, and globalization. Harnessing the financial, organizational, and technological resources and techniques of business and entrepreneurship, often in partnership with the public and non-profit sectors, can generate innovative solutions to these concerns. The interdisciplinary OSC track builds on the Management and Marketing Department’s expertise to prepare graduates to be active academics and leaders in meeting these complex challenges.
We offer a unique blend of academic and practical applications in organization theory. Our renowned faculty’s research interests span business disciplines as well as political economy, sociology, and women’s studies. We are deeply involved in current issues of management and organizational studies through writing, research, and ongoing work in industry and government. A recent $3.1 million award from the National Science Foundation has created specific funding for two students a year for this PhD track for students interested in the intersection of business, policy and science in complex environmental problems such as climate change and coastal risks. Current PhD students did their Master’s level studies in business, education, philosophy, finance, international management, and sociology (although a Master’s is not required, some prior research experience is helpful). You can learn more about the OSC research group and current students from the Organizations and Social Change blog.
The Centers and Institutes at the College of Management sponsor studies and seminars on important issues of interest to students of organizations and social change. They include the Center for Sustainable Enterprise and Regional Competitiveness, the Center for Collaborative Leadership, and the Center for Entrepreneurship. Across the University, PhD students can participate in the Center for Social Policy, the Global Environmental Governance Project, the Trotter Institute for the Study of Black Culture, the School for Global Inclusion, or the Center for Rebuilding Sustainable Communities after Disasters. Our students also take courses and attend seminars at the wide range of universities in the Boston area, with which our faculty have connections, including Boston College, Boston University, Brandeis, Harvard, MIT, Simmons, and Tufts.
Please spread the word about our PhD program, which prepares scholars to expand knowledge, teach students, and advise leaders from a critical perspective. UMass Boston is guided by a mission of social justice and community involvement, and it is an extraordinary place to learn about how people can change organizations, and how organizations can change the world. Students will find a vibrant community of scholars and students with whom to share their passion and with whom to prepare for the next stage in their professional development.
The application deadline is January 15, 2014
Prospective students are welcome to visit the campus and meet faculty. For more information, please contact
http://www.umb.edu/phdcm or http://www.umb.edu/academics/cm/business_administration_phd/osc/admission_requirements.
PH.D. SEMINAR / HEC PARIS
The Value of Institutional Logics
Visiting Professor, H.E.C. Paris
Tuesdays, January 14-February 28, 2014, 14:00-17:00
What is the value of institutional logics? In brief, an institutional logic is an order of production composed of distinctive subjects and objects mediated by a regime of material practice. Institutional logics are built around particular ontologies, around objects whose value and reality can never be entirely secured through rationality or the senses. These institutional objects are pointed to through names and performed through practice. Institutional logics are organized around unobservable institutional substances, institutional objects, where constellations of particular practices are understood as their enactment or production. Institutional logics point to socially regionalized orders of practice which are simultaneously orders of subjectification and objectification, that is, orders of practice that depend on the particular identities of subjects and ontologies of objects, which in turn depend on these same orders of practice.
The very same year – 1991 – that I and Robert Alford published “Bringing Society Back In,” forwarding the notion of an institutional logical approach, Luc Boltanski and Laurent Thévenot published De la Justification in French, systematically laying out their framework based on conventions of worth. It would take fifteen years until this important text would be translated into English in 2006 (On Justification: Economies of Worth). During that period, scholars of management sought to elaborate, revise, reformulate and reject the institutional logical approach. Only recently a number of thinkers, a number located in European business schools, have sought to engage the similarities and differences between these two approaches. This seminar is dedicated to comparing these different theoretical projects, including the more recent work of these two scholars who have taken their work along different, and to some extent, divergent paths, Boltanski towards an explicit institutionalism, and Thévenot towards regimes of engagement.
The question of value is therefore two-fold. On the one hand, of course, the seminar seeks to better specify the scope, limits, premises and productivities of the divergent approaches. On other hand, the seminar will examine the category of value itself as a form of valuation in the institutional-logical approach and of evaluation in conventions of worth. Thinking value one must engage both the ontological and the moral, both what is a good and what is good.
More details at https://studies2.hec.fr/jahia/Jahia/phd-seminars
Hosted at LUISS (Libera Università Internazionale degli Studi Sociali) Guido Carli, the workshop seeks to bring together kindred spirits from different disciplines, countries and academic systems who share interest in pushing forward theoretical and/or empirical frontiers of institutional research. The workshop does not have a specific focus. Further, it is not about presenting completed papers that have already been published or submitted to major international journals. It is an open forum, a space for meeting and conversation, and for coining bold new research ideas.
I’m pleased to give you an update on the Communications Committee, the latest working group established by the OMT Division.
Created in August 2012, the communications committee helps formalize activities that had been underway for a few years. In particular, our committee benefits from a website redesign effort that was initiated as part of the 5-year review led by Royston Greenwood and Henrich Greve, a pilot blogging committee effort lead by Brayden King, and Rodney Lacey’s many years of service as newsletter editor. Looking forward, it is hoped that the committee will allow the Division to better coordinate and expand our communication efforts.
The first order of business was recruiting a committee! I’m pleased to report that over the past year we have assembled a fantastic group, a feat I couldn’t have accomplished without the suggestions and support of the executive committee. In Orlando, many of us had a chance to get to meet in-person, some for the first time. Collectively, the committee keeps the Division’s website, Facebook page, SlideShare page, newsletter and listserv humming along.
Current committee members include:
Pablo Martin de HolanEM Lyon, ProfessorListserv moderator since 1994
Evelyn MicelottaAlberta School of Business, PhD StudentFormer member of the blogging committee, since 2010
Mia RaynardAlberta School of Business, PhD StudentFormer member of the blogging committee since 2010
Vern GlaserUSC Marshall, PhD StudentFormer member of the blogging committee since 2011
Derek HarmonUSC Marshall, PhD StudentFormer member of the blogging committee since 2011
Diane-Laure ArjalièsHEC Paris, Assistant ProfessorCommittee member since 2012
Marco ClementeHEC Paris, PhD StudentCommittee member since 2012
Rebecca HennPenn State, Assistant ProfessorCommittee member since 2013
Shilo HillsAlberta School of Business, PhD StudentCommittee member since 2013
Jochem KroezenRotterdam School of Management, PhD StudentCommittee member since 2013
Massimo MaoretIESE, Assistant ProfessorCommittee member since 2013
Felipe MassaLoyola (New Orleans), Assistant ProfessorCommittee member since 2013
Michael MauskapfNorthwestern Kellogg, PhD StudentCommittee member since 2013
Madeline ToubianaYork University, PhD StudentCommittee member since 2013
In addition to helping out with all sorts of content creation, different committee members help with other particular areas. For instance, Evelyn Micelotta and Marco Clemente are leading our efforts to coordinate communication activities with EGOS. Jochem Kroezen has been leading our Facebook efforts. Others are interested in fostering links with other communities. For instance, Derek Harmon is helping us build bridges between OMT and the OB division and Diane-Laure Arjaliès is helping to link OMT with accounting perspectives. Mia Raynard built the new “international workshops” section of our website.
If you have ideas for content, news or other announcements you’d like us to publicize, have other suggestions, or are interested in joining our committee, you can drop me a line at
Joel GehmanCommunications Committee ChairUniversity of Alberta
Emotions & Institutions Workshop
A cozy workshop on Emotions and Institutions is taking place on December 11 and 12, 2013, in Toronto, Canada, and there are a few spots open for attendees. If you are working in this area and want to present an emerging paper or a fully developed paper, please submit a 1000 word abstract (for an emerging paper), or full paper by on October 31, 2013 to
. There will be no conference fee, but we do ask you to cover your own travel and accommodation expenses.
Background on the Emotions and Institutions Workshop
The relationship between emotions and institutions is an emerging area of inquiry, beginning to attract some significant interest. Extant work in institutional theory has a cognitive and rational bias that masks both the emotional impact that institutions have on individuals’ lives (Creed, Dejordy & Lok, 2010; Creed, Hudson, Olkhuysen & Smith-Crowe, 2012), and the motivational force that emotions have for stimulating institutional work (Voronov & Vince, 2012; Toubiana, Zietsma & Bradshaw, 2013). As Friedland (2013: 44) described: “institutional life…demands myriad moments of located passion”. Related areas have also explored the effects of emotions on social outcomes and processes, identifying how anger can be used to mobilize social movement members to action (Goodwin & Jasper, 2006; Jasper 2011), how emotions can be “managed” in the service of organizational outcomes (Hochschild, 1983; Rafaeli & Sutton, 1987), and how emotions can be amplified in social settings (Collins, 2004; Hallett, 2003).
We feel that there is a significant need for institutional theory to take better account of emotions and their interrelationships with institutions. The objective of the Emotions and Institutions Workshop is to form a community of scholars interested in this area, to map the domain of scholarship, and identify some interesting research directions and a strong foundation for inquiry. Doug Creed and Maxim Voronov will provide a keynote presentation and commentary, respectively, and other scholars will present their work in progress.
Be part of the conversation…
If you would like to attend the conference but do not have a paper to submit, please email us (
) and tell us about your interests. If you are unable to attend the conference, but would like to be included in future communications on the topic, please let us know.
...Charlene and Madeline
Charlene ZietsmaAssociate Professor and Ann Brown Chair in Organization StudiesSchulich School of Business, York University416-736-2100 Ext. 77919
Madeline ToubianaDoctoral Candidate Organization StudiesSchulich School of Business, York University905-597-6977
Collins, R. 2004. Interaction ritual chains. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
Creed, W. E. D., R. Dejordy, and J. Lok. 2010. "Being the change: Resolving institutional contradiction through identity work " Academy of Management Journal, 53:1336-1364.
Creed, W. E. D., B. A. Hudson, G. A. Okhuysen, and K. Smith-Crowe. 2012. "Swimming in a sea of shame: incorporating emotion into explanations of institutional reproduction and change." Paper presented at the 28th EGOS Colloquium Helsinki
Friedland, R. 2013. "God, love and other good reasons for practice: Thinking through institutional logics." Pp. 25-50 in Institutional Logics in Action: Research in the Sociology of Organizations, vol. 39A, edited by M. Lounsbury and E. Boxenbaum: Emerald Group Publishing.
Goodwin, J. and J. M. Jasper. 2006. "Emotions and social movements." Pp. 611-636 in Handbook of the Sociology of Emotions, edited by J. E. Stets and J. H. Turner. New York: Springer.
Hallett, T. 2003. "Emotional Feedback and Amplification in Social Interaction." The Sociological Quarterly, 44:705-726.
Hochschild, A.R.1983. The managed heart: Commercialization of human feeling. Berkeley: University of California Press.
Jasper, J. M. 2011. "Emotions and social movements: twenty years of theory and research." Annual Review of Sociology, 37:285-303.
Rafaeli, Anat, and Robert I. Sutton. 1987. "Expression of emotion as part of the work role." Academy of Management Review, 12: 23-37.
Toubiana, M., Zietsma, C. & Bradshaw, P. 2013. “The message is on the wall: Emotions, institutional expectations and the dynamics of emotive institutional work.” Paper presented at the 29th EGOS Colloquium, Montreal.
Voronov, M. and R. Vince. 2012. "Integrating emotions into the analysis of institutional work." Academy of Management Review, 37:58-81.
OMT Needs YOU!! Calling for OMT Submissions and Reviewers for Academy of Management 2014
The OMT program at the Academy of Management is one of the most significant and vibrant events for our division. Significant because it is where we create and engage community: share our work, debate ideas, meet new friends and reconnect with existing friends. It is vibrant because scholars like you submit your cutting edge research and timely topics in the form of symposia and papers. The more submissions we have, the more choices you have as presenters and participants!
OMT is known for high quality papers and symposia. OMT members and their research routinely win AOM-level awards. To have a high quality program, we need reviewers--both new and established scholars. New scholars bring fresh voices, and established scholars bring wisdom on the craft of research and publishing. We need both kinds of reviewers! OMT is known for high quality and developmental reviews, so please sign up today to review for OMT at http://review.aomonline.org.
OMT has six divisional awards to identify outstanding papers and symposia: Best Paper, Louis Pondy Best Dissertation paper, Best International Paper (often the winner of the AOM Dexter award), Best Environmental and Social Practices paper and Best Symposia. Please submit your excellent work and sign up to review to ensure and identity high quality work! For more information on these awards, please go to http://omtweb.org/awards.
Looking forward to a great program and seeing you in Philadelphia!
Nelson PhillipsOMT Division Program Chair
Tags: AOM Annual Meeting | Call for Reviewers
At this year’s Academy of Management meeting in Orlando, Edward J. Zajac received our division’s Distinguished Scholar Award and delivered an engaging talk on the past, present, and future of OMT research (and his research in OMT). Ed is the James F. Bere Professor of Management & Organizations at Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management. He earned his Ph.D. in Organization and Strategy from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School (where—as we learned during his talk—he began as an Accounting PhD student!). You can read Ed's presentation here.
by Murad Mithani
Murad: I want to start with the obvious question: What attracted you to academia, and why business school?
Ed: I have always enjoyed learning, and intellectual challenges always stimulated me. At the same time, I also enjoyed teaching, which I see as the sharing of knowledge. To me, a life that had this combination, where I could be in the world of ideas and the world where ideas get communicated to others and applied – well, it was the perfect blend for me. In terms of a life as an academic, I see it as beginning when you decide to enter a doctoral program, which is your commitment to a lifetime of learning. I knew I wanted such an academic life, but initially I wasn’t sure what would be the subject to which I commit! My first choice, based on my undergraduate studies, was between doctoral programs in Accounting and in German literature, and I was accepted to programs in both fields. I initially enrolled in the Accounting PhD program at Wharton, but after taking first-year doctoral seminars in both accounting and management, I quickly realized that I enjoyed management topics and theories much more, and I was welcomed into the Management Department at Wharton. Looking back, I’m glad I got a strong dose of information economics my first year at Wharton – and I may be the only guy who has attended doctoral consortia in both accounting and in management!
Tags: Distinguished Scholar Award | Ed Zajac | Symbolic Management | Uncertainty
This year’s OMT Doctoral Consortium, co-organized by Forrest Briscoe (Penn State) and Peer Fiss (USC), saw a large number of applications and an exceptionally strong pool of nominees. For the first time this year, the event was run as an independent OMT Division consortium, and we were able to include 45 diverse doctoral students from around the world. In addition, more than 20 faculty members generously donated their time and expertise to make the consortium a success.
The event started Thursday night with the traditional cocktail hour and dinner at Todd English’s bluezoo restaurant, followed by a full day of activity on Friday that included panels on doing great research, managing your career and having an impact, and preparing for the job market. This year the consortium saw even more time allocated to small-group research roundtables organized using project proposals that participants submitted in advance. These roundtables provided an opportunity for detailed feedback and close dialogue with established scholars and other participants sharing common interests. The program also included a message from AMD Associate Editor Chet Miller about the newly established Academy of Management Discoveries journal.
In mid-afternoon, the Doctoral Consortium joined up with the OMT Junior Faculty Consortium for teaching roundtables, organized again by David Touve (Washington and Lee U.), Chair of the OMT Teaching Committee.
This event was generously sponsored by Emerald and USC’s Marshall School of Business.
Congratulations to the following OMT division members who earned Academy level recognition in 2013 for their contributions to management scholarship and education:
Academy of Management Distinguished Scholarly Contributions to Management Award
Michael L. Tushman
Michael L. Tushman, OMT Division Chair from 1989-1990, made significant contributions in one or more of the following areas over the course of his career:
Academy of Management Distinguished Service Award
James P. Walsh
James P. Walsh, OMT Division Chair from 1995-1996, made significant contributions in one or more of the following areas over the course of his career:
Academy of Management Review Best Paper of the Decade:
Mary J. Benner and Michael L. Tushman
Mary J. Benner, a longstanding OMT division member, and Michael L. Tushman, OMT Division Chair from 1989-1990, published the most outstanding article of the decade, based on the following criteria:
Benner, Mary J. and Michael L. Tushman. 2003. Exploitation, Exploration, and Process Management: The Productivity Dilemma Revisited. Academy of Management Review, 28(2): 238-256.
George R. Terry Book Award:
Patricia H. Thornton, William Ocasio, and Michael Lounsbury
The recent book by Patricia H. Thornton, a longstanding OMT division member, William Ocasio, OMT Division Chair from 2008-2009, and Michael Lounsbury, current OMT Division Chair, made the most outstanding contribution in the past two years to the advancement of management knowledge including management theory, conceptualization, research, or practice.
Thornton, Patricia H., William Ocasio, and Michael Lounsbury. 2012. The Institutional Logics Perspective: A New Approach to Culture, Structure, and Process. New York: Oxford University Press.
Academy of Management Journal Best Paper Award:
Michael Smets, Tim Morris, and Royston Greenwood
Michael Smets, OMT division member, Tim Morris, OMT division member, and Royston Greenwood, OMT Division Chair from 2010-2011, published the most outstanding article of the year, based on the following criteria:
Smets, Michael, Tim Morris, and Royston Greenwood. 2012. From Practice to Field: A Multilevel Model of Practice-Driven Institutional Change. Academy of Management Journal, 55(4): 877-904.
Interview by Jochem Kroezen (Rotterdam School of Management) and Shilo Hills (University of Alberta).
The 2013 OMT Division's Best International Paper Award went to Daniel Wäger (Kellogg School of Management/Amsterdam Business School) and Sébastien Mena (Cass Business School) for their paper: “The Diffusion of Contested Practices across Environments: Social Movements’ Boundary-Bridging Role”. Congratulations to the winners! In this interview they reflect on the paper and winning the award.
Could you briefly describe what the paper is about?
DANIEL: The paper is about how transnationally connected social movement activists drive the cross-national diffusion of a corporate practice. We look at how the corporate governance practice 'Say on Pay' (granting a consultative vote to shareholders on a company's top management remuneration policy) has made its way from Anglo-Saxon countries to Switzerland between 2008 and 2012. We show that the pressure of transnationally connected activists was crucial especially for the initial introduction of 'Say on Pay' to Switzerland, whereas later on, local institutional pressures arose that led to the further spread of Say on Pay among Swiss companies. The adoption of 'Say on Pay' was strongly opposed by the top management of the corporate elite in Switzerland. Corporate governance in Switzerland has traditionally been controlled by this elite group, whereas shareholders have been largely marginalized and the state has instead focused on the self-regulatory efforts of corporations. Over the past 15 years, however, three parallel developments have strengthened the role of shareholders in Swiss corporate governance: First, the constitution of Ethos, a central shareholder activist organization whose members are recipients of Swiss pension funds and are in favor of improving Swiss companies' performance regarding environmental, social and corporate governance issues. Second, the development of a transnational shareholder activist infrastructure through platforms such as the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI), whereby shareholders from different places around the world pool their shares together in order to push for changes regarding companies' environmental, social and corporate governance performance. And third, an explosion of the percentage of Swiss companies' shares that are held by foreign (especially US and UK) investors, who are much more inclined to engage in shareholder activism than traditional Swiss investors. In the largest Swiss companies, foreign investors hold up to 50-60% of the shares. Hence, when Ethos pushed for the adoption of 'Say on Pay' at Swiss companies, the support of allied transnational investors could be relied upon, which led to a tipping of the balance in favor of this transnational coalition of shareholder activists.
The Best International Paper Award celebrates work that deals with themes and settings that are of interest to an international audience. How does your paper appeal to an international audience?
DANIEL: I think that the paper appeals to an international audience in two ways: First, it looks at how a local corporate practice travels across national boundaries. Second, and maybe more interestingly, it points to what social or political embeddedness can mean in the age of globalization. While during the post WWII-period companies were socially and politically embedded in a national community, many researchers have argued that globalization has led to a dis-embedding of companies, which have become ever less dependent on their non-mobile national communities. Our paper shows that social embeddedness does not have to be confined to a national space. Transnationally connected activists can lead to social embeddedness at the transnational level.
SÉBASTIEN: I think that our paper also speaks to several different internationally-focused sub-disciplines and audiences. Like the activists of our paper, I believe the topic of our paper manages to cross boundaries between disciplines. It has obvious implications for international business, as most of the companies in our study have international operations. It also speaks to the importance of international shareholders in corporate governance. And of course, it speaks to diffusion and transnationality of institutional processes and to transnational social movement research.
How did you come up with the idea for the paper?
DANIEL: This paper is part of a research project of Seb and I about shareholder activism and corporate governance. That research project is constituted of two articles, which are part of my dissertation. This paper is the second article of my dissertation. The first dissertation article examines how the role identity of pension funds was translated from the US to Switzerland over the past 30 years. Through this successful translation of the pension fund role identity away from mere holders of shares and towards conceiving of themselves as co-owners of companies, Swiss pension funds moved from being passive elements to becoming active participants in the governance of Swiss companies. We wanted to examine whether this change in the role identity of pension funds also had real consequences for Swiss companies. Hence, in the present paper we show how Swiss pension funds - together with their transnational allies - push for the adoption of a corporate governance practice.
SÉBASTIEN: The genesis of the whole research project stems really from the common interest Daniel and I share in social movement activists and societal change. I remember Daniel looking for a fitting research context for his dissertation and we had discussed several times one of the current issues in our country: the (excessive) remuneration of executives and the apparent prodigious changes brought on this issue by a shareholder activist organization - Ethos.
Do you have any interesting anecdotes about the data collection process for the paper or about other parts of the research process?
DANIEL: Well, the paper is certainly a great example of how the end of your dissertation should NOT look like. So, I had to hand in my PhD-thesis mid-November 2012. By mid-May 2012 we did not have one single data point. The following 6 months were…. a bit of a rush.
SÉBASTIEN: Since we had to get information from annual reports manually, we now know that BlackRock (a US investment firm) basically owns corporate Switzerland. We were quite impressed by the amount of shares of Swiss corporations they own.
What is the most surprising finding of the paper? What are the implications of your findings for practice?
DANIEL: The paper points to the importance of politics and power in the transnational space: when activists manage to connect across borders and put their resources and strengths together, there can be important consequences for the traditional balance of power between corporate elites and their stakeholders in local settings. For the reality of companies this means that it is not enough to monitor the evolution of their proximal institutional environments, but that they have to be prepared to deal with socio-political changes that have their origins in remote places far beyond their sphere of influence. In this sense, the paper is a great example of how globalization has enhanced the complexity that companies are exposed to in the environments they are operating in.
SÉBASTIEN: Again, I think you can look at the paper from a lot of different angles and derive different implications. So, for example, I believe that our paper provides guidance to firms when it comes to dealing with shareholder activists. It also provides quite a lot of implications for successful shareholder activism. The paper also highlights important issues when it comes to policy and corporate governance laws and self-regulation.
Were you surprised by the critical acclaim for the paper? What does this prize mean for you?
DANIEL: The prize is a huge honor. It is a great feeling to get recognition from your peers for your academic work. I really did not expect to win the prize – I was all the more excited when Candy informed us that we had won!
SÉBASTIEN: It is definitely a great honor to be the recipients of this award, especially when it comes from your own community of scholars - OMT. And of course, as with every piece of work, it's never quite 'finished', so it's surprising, and great as well, to be recognized in this way.
2013 Best International Paper Award Sponsor
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