Institutional Field Dynamics and the Competition Between Institutional Logics: The Role of Rhetoric in the Evolving Control of the Modern Corporation

The authors examine how competing institutional logics shape institutional fields. Specifically, they conceptualize control of the modern corporation as an evolving institutional field. They connect changes in the institutional field to the rhetoric and corresponding logics put forth by various corporate stakeholders vying for control of the firm. Changes in the corporate institutional field are represented as the diffusion of takeovers and takeover defenses. Corporate control rhetoric is traced in interviews with corporate board members. The authors argue that the rhetoric of corporate control shapes and establishes dominant stakeholder groups in the institutional field. They conclude with a brief discussion of their analysis and a call for further research.