The immateriality of the material in institutional logics

Candace Jones, Eva Boxenbaum, Callen Anthony

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


According to most theoretical formulations, institutional logics contain
both an ideational and a material dimension. Whereas the ideational
aspect, such as cognitive frames and symbols, has received significant
attention in the growing literature on institutional logics, the material
aspect has remained largely invisible and often implicit. We analyze the
16 most central theoretical and empirical works on institutional logics
with the aim of exploring how the material dimension of logics has been
conceptualized and researched. Our findings suggest that materiality has
been interpreted primarily as practices and structures, and rarely as
physical objects. We explore some consequences of omitting physical
materials as an object of study in institutional logics research and point to
avenues for future research that may enhance theory development of
institutional logics by explicitly attending to the role of materials.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)51-75
Number of pages25
JournalResearch in the Sociology of Organizations
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • institutional logics
  • institutional complexity
  • materiality
  • practice


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