Quotation Reuter, Marta, Semper, Daniel, Wijkstrom, Filip. 2019. Intermediary Organizations in the Game of Open Access: Three Functions of Transnational Field Governance. EGOS, Edinburgh, United Kingdom, 04.07.-06.07.




In this study, we focus on governance in organizational fields exercised by what we identify as intermediary or boundary organizations. A particular interest concerns the conditions and the particular functions that allow such organizations to steer practices and norms in a field. In this process, we argue, intermediary organizations have the capacity to re-negotiate and re-configure fields, i.e., exercise field governance. We have studied the case of Open Access publishing in the European university field, unfolding in the different local contexts of Austria and Sweden. We found that the population of intermediary organizations in the field exercise field governance functions through a fine-tuned balance between stability and change. This balancing act is possible as intermediary organizations take on the distinct functions of activists, administrators and arena providers. These functions allow for change simultaneous to the maintenance of stability. Based on our findings, we contribute to the literature on organizational fields by (1) showing the relevance of intermediary organizations in field governance processes, and (2) shifting the focus from maintenance to the capacity both to create field dynamics, and to balance these two types of forces. Building on this steering capacity, (3) this study questions the understanding of change as either disruptive or continuous. Instead, we provide a more fine-grained notion of change and transformation in fields, which requires a governance architecture that allows a certain level of both, disruption and continuity, as well as provides the arenas where these field forces can meet and be negotiated.


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Publication's profile

Status of publication Published
Affiliation WU
Type of publication Paper presented at an academic conference or symposium
Language English
Title Intermediary Organizations in the Game of Open Access: Three Functions of Transnational Field Governance
Event EGOS
Year 2019
Date 04.07.-06.07.
Country United Kingdom
Location Edinburgh


Semper, Daniel (Details)
Reuter, Marta (Stockholm University, Sweden)
Wijkstrom, Filip (Stockholm School of Economics, Sweden)
Institute for Organization Studies IN (Details)
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