Institutional logics and the historical contingency of power in organizations: Executive succession in the higher education publishing industry, 1958-1990

Patricia H. Thornton*, William Ocasio

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1161 Scopus citations

Abstract

This article examines the historical contingency of executive power and succession in the higher education publishing industry. We combine interview data with historical analysis to identify how institutional logics changed from an editorial to a market focus. Event history models are used to test for differences in the effects of these two institutional logics on the positional, relational, and economic determinants of executive succession. The quantitative findings indicate that a shift in logics led to different determinants of executive succession. Under an editorial logic, executive attention is directed to author-editor relationships and internal growth, and executive succession is determined by organization size and structure. Under a market logic, executive attention is directed to issues of resource competition and acquisition growth, and executive succession is determined by the product market and the market for corporate control.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)801-843
Number of pages43
JournalAmerican Journal of Sociology
Volume105
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Institutional logics and the historical contingency of power in organizations: Executive succession in the higher education publishing industry, 1958-1990'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this