Processes for Retrenching Logics: The Alberta Oil Sands Case

By February 11, 2013Library

Erb Faculty Member, Andy Hoffman contributed to this article which was published in Research in the Sociology of Organizations

Abstract:  Why do significant cultural anomalies frequently fail to generate change in institutional logics? Current process models offer a number of direct ways to enable the creation and diffusion of ideas and practices, but the resistance to adoption and diffusion, something so emphasized by the old institutionalism, has not been incorporated as directly in those models in a way that allows us to answer this question. Therefore, we theorize three retrenchment processes that impede innovation: cultural positioning, behavioral resistance, and feedback shaping. The ways in which these processes work are detailed in a case study of one high profile cultural anomaly: oil production and environmental management in Alberta’s oil sands from 2008 to 2011. Implications for the institutional logics perspective and understanding logics in action are discussed.

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