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Title: A comparative study of institutional entrepreneurship : an investigation of entrepreneurial SMEs in the UK and the Greek food industry
Author: Chalkias, Konstantinos
Awarding Body: University of Surrey
Current Institution: University of Surrey
Date of Award: 2013
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Institutional theory and its crucial role in organizational theory have evolved during the last few decades. Despite the seminal contribution of new institutionalism in organizational institutionalism, early neo-institutionalism studies mainly considered the constraints under which actors operate and emphasised institutional stability and organizational conformity. Therefore, these studies have been criticized for having an over-socialized view of actors. The emergence of institutional entrepreneurship research has advanced our knowledge on institutional change and contributed to the shift away from the over-socialized perspective by bringing agency back into institutional theory. However, research on institutional entrepreneurship has largely been done through single in-depth studies that overemphasize change results at the macro-level and present institutional entrepreneurs as under-socialized actors who, despite institutional pressures to conform and ]1omogenize, manage to dramatically change institutions. This comparative research study (a) extends the level of analysis beyond organizational fields across the national border to examine institutional entrepreneurs across different contexts and (b) focuses more closely on the interaction between actors and institutions at the micro-entrepreneurial level to disembed actors from both under- and over-socialized profiles. This is a cross-national qualitative research study among four small-medium food enterprises, which operate in two diverse institutional contexts (i.e. Greece and the UK). It conceptualizes institutional entrepreneurship in a comparative perspective between diverse institutional contexts by bridging it to the proximity of entrepreneurial actors that operate at the microlevel and are embedded into the structure of institutions. The empirical findings of this study highlight the heterogeneity of institutional entrepreneurship across diverse institutional contexts and different actors, providing implications that it is a country (structure) and actor (agency) specific process. Subsequently, this study moves beyond the over-socialized/under-socialized dichotomy by focusing on entrepreneurial actors who have the agency to strategically take action, while at the same time their interests and strategies are affected by institutional structures.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available