The iron cage revisited institutional isomorphism and collective rationality in organizational fields

We describe three isomorphic processes-coercive, mimetic, and normative—leading to this outcome

Paul J. DiMaggio; Walter W. Powell

2004

Scholarcy highlights

  • What makes organizations so similar? We contend that the engine of rationalization and bureaucratization has moved from the competitive marketplace to the state and the professions
  • Once a set of organizations emerges as a field, a paradox arises: rational actors make their organizations increasingly similar as they try to change them
  • We describe three isomorphic processes-coercive, mimetic, and normative—leading to this outcome
  • We suggest implications for theories of organizations and social change

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