Understanding Resource-Deprived Actors’ Interaction with Conflicting Institutional Demands

Vivek Soundararajan, Stephen Brammer, 2015

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Academy of Management Proceedings

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Summary & key words

Recent research in institutional theory has given prominence to actors' agency in strategically responding to institutional pressures, and shaping institutions themselves. Nevertheless, very little attention has been paid to how resource-deprived actors cope with institutional demands. In this study, we make a major contribution to advancing theory on strategic responses to institutional pressures among resource deprived actors through a detailed analysis of the mechanisms that small developing world suppliers employ to manage the often conflicting institutional demands they face regarding labour practices. Through this analysis, we establish a typology of perception, of and response to, institutional pressures that reflects the unique circumstances of resource deprived actors, and theorize a number of proposals regarding the circumstances in which these mechanisms are deployed. In so doing, we contribute significantly to institutional theory, and also to empirical understanding of supplier behavior in developing countries.


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