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Institutions and entrepreneurship

Institutions and Entrepreneurship

ISBN: 978-0-85724-239-6, eISBN: 978-0-85724-240-2

Publication date: 8 November 2010


How do institutions affect entrepreneurship? Conversely, how do entrepreneurs impact institutions? Institutional theory has long struggled to explain the action and agency inherent in entrepreneurship (DiMaggio, 1988; Barley & Tolbert, 1997). Contemporary institutionalist research in organization studies began with the question of how the institutional environment shapes the structures and behaviors of existing organizations. This research largely focused on how normative, regulative, and cognitive dimensions of the environment (Scott, 2008) constrain large, mature organizations and the circumstances that increase the adoption of new structures by such organizations (Meyer & Rowan, 1977; DiMaggio & Powell, 1983; Tolbert & Zucker, 1983). A subsequent wave of research in the institutional tradition focused on institutional change within mature organizational fields (see Dacin, Goodstein, & Scott, 2002). Some recent research has studied the actors – “institutional entrepreneurs” – that create new or transform existing institutions (e.g., Greenwood, Suddaby, & Hinings, 2002; Maguire, Hardy, & Lawrence, 2004). Much less attention, however, has been paid within the institutional-theory literature to entrepreneurship: the processes of founding and managing new organizations.


Sine, W.D. and David, R.J. (2010), "Institutions and entrepreneurship", Sine, W.D. and David, R.J. (Ed.) Institutions and Entrepreneurship (Research in the Sociology of Work, Vol. 21), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 1-26.



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