36th EGOS Colloquium
Organizing for a Sustainable Future:
Responsibility, Renewal & Resistance
University of Hamburg
July 2–4, 2020
36th EGOS Colloquium
July 2–4, 2020
This sub-theme is part of the EGOS Standing Working Group (SWG) 12 on “Institutions, Innovation, Impact: How Institutional
Theory Matters”. Studies show that institutions are constituted by their temporal embeddedness, material circumstances and
spatial contingencies. Yet, institutional research in these three domains is still in its infancy. For the 2020 Colloquium,
we therefore call for papers that address these emerging research streams individually or combined, with a particular focus
on their role on institutional innovation and change.
Several recent studies establish that temporality – the negotiated constructions of time (Butler, 1995) – shapes various institutional processes. Shared temporal understandings, such as “right timing” and “windows of opportunity” influence the development of fields, and participants’ decisions to engage with them (Granqvist & Gustafsson, 2016). These understandings are not fixed but malleable, and fields are arenas for dialogue between communities with different timeframes and temporal logics (Reinecke & Ansari, 2015; Slawinski & Bansal, 2015). Change processes may also be characterized by particular sequences of actions, timelines, temporal horizons, and forms of temporary organizing (Tukiainen & Granqvist, 2016). Moreover, in a turbulent world, securing the continuity of traditions and rituals rely on established routines and practices (Dacin et al., 2010).
Institutions unfold not only temporally but also spatially. Innovations and institutional change often arise from spaces – geographically bounded social settings – within and between institutional fields (Furnari, 2014; 2016; Cartel et al., 2018). For example, it is often in the ‘interstitial spaces’ connecting different fields (Furnari, 2014), such as maker-spaces (Browder et al., 2019) and accelerators (Cohen et al., 2018), that people and organizations experiment with new practices and innovate existing institutions (Cartel et al., 2018; Bucher & Langley, 2016). Previous research has also pointed at the relationship between place and institutions (Lawrence & Dover, 2015) and at the key role of intra-organizational ‘relational spaces’ (Kellogg, 2009), ‘liminal spaces’ (Howard-Greenville et al., 2011) and ‘field configuring events’ such as conferences or festivals (Schüssler et al., 2014). Despite this emerging research, by and large institutional research has paid limited attention to how spatial factors influence the dynamics of innovation and institutional change.
The temporal and spatial dimensions of institutions are intertwined with their materiality. A material turn has taken place within different strands of organizational theory (Carlile et al., 2013). However, investigating the role that materiality plays in institutional processes still requires our attention. Scholars have called for a closer examination of the material foundation of institutions (Boxenbaum et al., 2018) – be it the role that they play in institutional logics, the role of visuals in institutional processes, or the role of aesthetics in technological and institutional processes (Meyer et al., 2013; Eisenman, 2013; Krabbe & Grodal, 2018).
To address the origins of institutional innovation and change, this sub-theme invites papers that address each of these three domains individually or connect across them. Studies can draw on different literatures and approaches, including sociology of time, social geography, practice theory, approaches to materiality, studies on discourse and narratives, institutional work, cultural entrepreneurship, and institutional logics.
Studies in this sub-theme may include, but are not restricted to the following topics:
Temporal strategies and actions for influencing innovations, institutional change or achieving societal impact
Explorations for how institutional agency is embedded in spaces, places and material circumstances
Connections between temporality, space and materiality—for example (but not limited to) how various spaces, places and events can contain and produce certain temporal norms and timeframes
How aesthetics or other material practices are institutionalized or might help shape institutional processes
Temporal, spatial and material manifestations of cultural beliefs and their role in innovation, institutional change and achieving societal impact
Longitudinal studies on how temporary organizations and spaces may give rise to more permanent innovation and change outcomes
New approaches to, and conceptualizations of, fields that are sensitive to their temporal, spatial and material constitution
How institutional logics constitute and are constituted by temporality, spatiality and materiality at different levels of analysis
We encourage a plurality of methodological approaches ranging from qualitative, historical, quantitative and experimental studies. In particular, we call for papers that creatively employ a variety of methods and new data sources such as images, objects, social media data, and new types of archival data.