Temporal Dynamics of Deinstitutionalization – The Case of Asbestos in France

  • Hélène Peton University Paris Est Créteil, IRG, F-94010 Créteil, France; and University Gustave Eiffel, IRG, F-77447 Marne-la-Vallée, France
  • Antoine Blanc PSL-Université Paris Dauphine, CNRS, Paris, France
Keywords: Deinstitutionalization, Agency, Resources, Institutional work, Asbestos

Abstract

Through the controversial history of asbestos use in France, we study a long deinstitutionalization process marked by alternating phases of acceleration and deceleration. To understand these changes of pace, we reveal interactions over the long term between action profiles that differ in terms of the type of agency (strategic or pragmatic) and the resource mobilization process (leveraging, accumulation, or convening) involved. Analyzing a rich corpus of documentary data triangulated with interviews, we draw up a schema of the complex deinstitutionalization process concerning asbestos in France. We then set out four theoretical propositions about the temporal dynamics of deinstitutionalization: (1) defensive action essentially involves leveraging efforts that promote long phases and help to slow down the pace of deinstitutionalization; (2) disruptive action produces slow, incremental effects through marginal integration of changes into existing institutional schemas. The acceleration phase of deinstitutionalization is temporally bounded by the disruptive actors’ resources; (3) the acceleration and deceleration phases of deinstitutionalization hinge on the perception of urgency, which is a factor of instrumentalization for strategic actors; and (4) convening is a form of mobilization that significantly slows down the pace of deinstitutionalization.

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Published
2021-09-15
How to Cite
Peton, H., & Blanc, A. (2021). Temporal Dynamics of Deinstitutionalization – The Case of Asbestos in France. M@n@gement, 24(3), 40–55. https://doi.org/10.37725/mgmt.v24.4570
Section
Original Research Articles