‘Healing the scars of history’: Projects, skills and field strategies in institutional entrepreneurship

2007-07-10T13:15:39Z (GMT) by Markus Perkmann Andre Spicer
We explore what institutional entrepreneurs do to propagate new organizational forms. Our findings are derived from a longitudinal study of the ‘Euroregion’, an organizational form used by local authorities situated close to European borders for co-ordinating policies across borders. We find that the institutional entrepreneurs behind the Euroregion engaged in several types of institution-building projects, with a changing focus over time. While the initial emphasis was on interactional projects, this was followed by a focus on technical projects and finally cultural projects. The skills the institutional entrepreneurs deployed changed accordingly. While in a first phase predominantly political skills were used, later analytical skills and finally cultural skills were added. Furthermore, the institutional entrepreneurs propagated the organizational form by switching their institution-building projects between different fields. We interpret these findings by outlining a process theory of institutional entrepreneurship that conceptualises the institutional entrepreneur in light of its development as an innovating organization.