Institutional entrepreneurship: social responsibility and agency of social entrepreneurs in driving institutional change

Cagla Yavuz, Mine Karataş-Özkan, Jeremy Howells

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


The agentic role of the individual and organizational actors in the institutional change process has come to the fore of the debate through the notion of ‘institutional entrepreneurship', the term coined by DiMaggio's (1988) influential book, inspired by Eisenstadt's (1980) work (see Battilana et al., 2009 for review). Institutional entrepreneurs are defined as ‘[N]ew institutions [that] arise when organized actors with sufficient resources (institutional entrepreneurs) see in them an opportunity to realize interests that they value highly' (DiMaggio, 1988, p. 14). Drawing attention to the powerful actors, DiMaggio also implies that resource mobilization is central to the notion of institutional entrepreneurship (for example, Hardy and Maguire, 2008), which has been examined by an increasing number of studies (for example, Lawrence et al., 2002; Leblebici et al., 1991; Maguire et al., 2004), mainly interested in powerful actors (DiMaggio, 1988; Greenwood and Suddaby, 2006; Fligstein and Mara-Drita, 1996) as the overly rational and disembedded heroes (Meyer, 2006) in the developed-world context. Critiques of institutional entrepreneurship studies have emerged, with a claim that there is a lack of consideration for the situated and relational approach (for example, Delbridge and Edwards, 2007; 2008; Edwards and Jones, 2008; Leca and Naccache, 2006; Mutch, 2007) in understanding the agency of powerless actors in emerging-market contexts (for example, Mair and Marti, 2006; Marti and Mair, 2009).

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCorporate Social Responsibility and Human Resource Management
Subtitle of host publicationA Diversity Perspective
EditorsMine Karataş-Ozkan, Katerina Nicolopoulou, Mustafa F. Özbilgin
PublisherEdward Elgar Publishing
Number of pages26
ISBN (Electronic)9781783476367
ISBN (Print)9781848447936
Publication statusPublished - 29 Aug 2014


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