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Agency, Institutional Change, and Continuity: The Case of the Finnish Civil War

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  • Juha-Antti Lamberg
  • Kalle Pajunen

Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to study the role of individual agency in the process of institutional change. We conducted a historical study to explore the motivations and activities of two prominent individuals in business and politics before, during, and after the Finnish Civil War. Our most important finding is that the improvised actions of individuals with complex interests were causally related to long-term institutional changes. Specifically, our study contributes to theory development in the field of institutional analysis by showing how individual actors can be a mechanism for both institutional continuity and change. On the practical side, our account can help managers understand the power of improvised activities in the face of ambiguity and uncertainty, especially if there is the possibility of acting in concert. Copyright (c) 2010 The Authors. Journal compilation (c) 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd and Society for the Advancement of Management Studies.

Suggested Citation

  • Juha-Antti Lamberg & Kalle Pajunen, 2010. "Agency, Institutional Change, and Continuity: The Case of the Finnish Civil War," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(s1), pages 814-836, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:jomstd:v:47:y:2010:i:s1:p:814-836
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Kalle Pajunen & Liang Fang, 2013. "Dialectical tensions and path dependence in international joint venture evolution and termination," Asia Pacific Journal of Management, Springer, vol. 30(2), pages 577-600, June.
    2. Hélène Peton & Antoine Blanc, 2011. "The interplay of agencies in institutional disruption: An explanation of the slow death of asbestos in France," Post-Print halshs-00672436, HAL.
    3. Mary O'Sullivan & Margaret B. W. Graham, 2010. "Guest Editors' Introduction," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(s1), pages 775-790, July.

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