Institutional Approaches to Business Strategy

Ray Loveridge

in The Oxford Handbook of Strategy

Published in print April 2006 | ISBN: 9780199275212
Published online September 2009 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Business and Management C

Institutional Approaches to Business Strategy

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  • Business and Management
  • Business Strategy
  • Organizational Theory and Behaviour



This article aims to set out the main institutional parameters to strategic decision-making; to explain the process by which the institutionalization of these parameters occurs; to highlight the significance of the mode of recognition and sponsorship of institutionalized stakeholder groups; to emphasize the reflexive nature of this process in the formation of strategic frames and recipes; and to outline some of the important theoretical interpretations of institutions and institutionalization. It first explores the meaning of institutions as the contextual site for strategic decisions. The various strands of institutionalist interpretations of business strategy are next outlined and in the following three sections the main schools of bounded rationality, population isomorphism, and comparative systems are briefly described. The manner in which the life-cycle metaphor can be applied to the process of institutionalization is demonstrated in the next section. The penultimate and final sections offer a critique of some theoretical approaches to institutions.

Keywords: institutional approaches; business strategy; institutionalization; decision-making; stakeholder groups; bounded rationality

Article.  13195 words. 

Subjects: Business and Management ; Business Strategy ; Organizational Theory and Behaviour

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