Public Organization Review

, Volume 6, Issue 1, pp 79-90

First online:

Institutional and Stakeholder Mapping: Frameworks for Policy Analysis and Institutional Change

  • Paul Dragos AligicaAffiliated withMercatus Center at George Mason University Email author 

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Despite its importance and its widespread employment in policymaking practice, the theoretical and epistemic foundations of institutional mapping have not been elaborated and its legitimacy is yet to be fully granted by the academic community. This paper is a contribution to this overdue effort. The paper has two parts. First it introduces mapping as a cognitive process and explore in this context the structural similarities between maps and theories. While doing that it identifies the basic elements of mapping as a cognitive procedure and based on that it outlines the optimal features of the possible meta-theories framing policy-oriented institutional mapping. The second part goes a step further and discusses two concrete examples that may come close to illustrate the meta-theoretical ideal-type outlined at the end of the first part: the theoretical system implied in the Chicago School of sociology and the Institutional Analysis and Development framework inspired by the new institutional economics.


Policy analysis Stakeholder mapping Public policy design Institutional analysis