"Streams of Inconsistent Institutional Influences: Middle Managers as Carriers of Multiple Identities"
, in Human Relations, Vol. 59, Nummer 11, Seite(n) 1515-1541, 2006
Streams of Inconsistent Institutional Influences: Middle Managers as Carriers of Multiple Identities
Sprache des Titels:
Conceiving institutional effects as occurring within the boundaries of predefined institutional environments, spaces or fields leaves little leeway for understanding transnational phenomena of interaction, competition and overlapping jurisdiction of ideas, norms and regulations of multiple origin. I propose here the metaphor of intersecting institutional streams, which influence social actors due to their different origin, strength and fluidity. Thanks to a new understanding of the interaction between roles, institutionalized identities and the self, I refer to individuals not as cultural and institutional dopes, but as able, in varying degrees, to participate in multiple cultural traditions and to maintain distinctive and inconsistent action frames. I collected quantitative information on 418 Italian middle managers, working for local and international firms in Italy, and qualitative information on 113 of them. The majority in international firms enacted Anglo-Saxon identities, and more so in US and British firms; hybridizations occurred with positively perceived aspects of Italian institutions. The majority in Italian firms enacted a traditional Italian identity. Enactment was dependent on characteristics of the role (hierarchical level, international interconnectedness) and on the degree of identification with the international firm?s culture. The latter was spurred by the global integrated use of HRM practices.