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From God to Markets. An Analysis of the Meaning Work of Boundary Actors During the 'Mainstreaming' of Socially Responsible Investment

Abstract : Meaning work is a key category of institutional work, which aims at maintaining or changing of field-level meanings. Mobilizing institutional analysis of field level change processes and the social movement framing literature, this study conceptualizes the types of meaning work that actor at the boundary of a social movement and the incumbent field undertake in the process of “mainstreaming”. Mainstreaming in this paper is defined as a process whereby a social movement succeeds in diffusing its norms, values or practices across the wider incumbent field. During the past few decades, socially responsible investment (SRI) has shifted from being a marginal, religious, mostly US-based movement to an influential international movement, which has succeeded in mobilizing a large number of incumbent investors and financial organizations. Based on a multi-stage qualitative analysis of the SRI field during the past 50 years, this study first establishes the structural changes that define a field undergoing mainstreaming. It then introduces propositions regarding links between these field-level changes and the meaning work that actors at the boundary between a social movement and the incumbent field undertake.
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https://hal-hec.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-02018553
Contributor : Antoine Haldemann <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, February 13, 2019 - 9:44:17 PM
Last modification on : Thursday, February 14, 2019 - 1:27:00 AM

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  • HAL Id : hal-02018553, version 1

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Afshin Mehrpouya. From God to Markets. An Analysis of the Meaning Work of Boundary Actors During the 'Mainstreaming' of Socially Responsible Investment. 2014. ⟨hal-02018553⟩

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