The intersection of entrepreneurship research and institutional theory has begun to attract increasing scholarly attention. While much recent research has studied "institutional entrepreneurs" credited with creating new or transforming existing institutions to support their projects, less attention has been paid to the institutions that constitute the menus from which choices are made, and delineate resources for entrepreneurial or other agentic activities. While models of institutionalization frequently break down the process into different categorical stages, how an evolving context affords changing agentic latitude for actors merits more attention. We study the institutionalization of 'temporary work', a new employment practice led by temporary work organizations, a new organizational form in the Netherlands from the 1960s to 2008. Our account suggests an 'ecological' imagery of institutionalization; rather than entrepreneurs' with predetermined agendas shaping and reshaping institutions, we observed distributed institutional entrepreneurship – entrepreneurs seeking change in concert and in conflict with other interdependent actors simultaneously creating, disrupting and maintaining institutions. By examining how an evolving context influences the role of "actor configurations", whose actions, interactions and counteractions can collectively lead to change, but also unintended outcomes, we highlight the non-teleological nature of institutionalization. Finally, our findings suggest that while the legitimacy of a novel practice grows with increasing institutionalization, legitimacy contests may recur and that increasing institutionalization may provide the backdrop for novel practices to emerge.

change, context, institutional entrepreneurship, institutional work, institutionalization, labor market, organizational fileds, temporary work
Particular Labor Markets: General (jel J40), Business Administration: General (jel M10), Personnel Management (jel M12), Personnel Economics: General (jel M50), Cultural Economics; Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology (jel Z1)
Erasmus Research Institute of Management
hdl.handle.net/1765/40359
ERIM Report Series Research in Management
Erasmus Research Institute of Management

Koene, B.A.S, & Ansari, S.M. (2013). Entrepreneurs, institutional entrepreneurship and institutional change (No. ERS-2013-009-ORG). ERIM Report Series Research in Management. Erasmus Research Institute of Management. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1765/40359