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The value of institutional logics

Topics and Issues from European Research

Roger Friedland

Roger Friedland brings back the significance of values to the debate on institutional logics. He argues that without values, institutional theory neglects the ‘why’, the purpose that drives humans and is core to the formation of societies. He argues that the loss of values in North American theorizing is related to the desire to leave behind the shadow of Parsons’ theoretical architecture – a desire, we might say, European researchers never knew. Building on, but also departing from, an array of foundational thinkers from sociology, philosophy, and political science, Friedland lays out that institutional logics have a value grounding – an institutional substance that is enacted through practices around objects carried by subjects and categorized by names this substance constitutes.