Legitimacy-Seeking Organizational Strategies in Controversial Industries: A Case Study Analysis and a Bidimensional Model
- 1.2k Downloads
Controversial industry sectors, such as alcohol, gambling, and tobacco, though long-established, suffer organizational legitimacy problems. The authors consider various strategies used to seek organizational legitimacy in the U.K. casino gambling market. The findings are based on a detailed, multistakeholder case study pertaining to a failed bid for a regional supercasino. They suggest four generic strategies for seeking organizational legitimacy in this highly complex context: construing, earning, bargaining, and capturing, as well as pathways that combine these strategies. The case analysis and proposed bidimensional model of generic legitimacy-seeking strategies contribute to limited literature on organizational legitimacy in controversial industry sectors. In addition, beyond organizations active in controversial contexts, this study and its implications are useful for individuals and organizations supporting or opposing the organizational legitimacy of organizations in controversial industries.
KeywordsCase study Casino Controversial industry Corporate social responsibility Legitimacy Stakeholders
Alex Michalos served as editor for this article.
- Aldrich, H. E., & Fiol, C. M. (1994). Fools rush in? The institutional context of industry creation. Academy of Management Review, 19(2), 645–670.Google Scholar
- Brogan, B., & Merrick, J. (2007). Brown kills off Blair’s supercasino plans. Daily Mail, July 12. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-467743/Brown-kills-Blairs-supercasino-plans.html. Accessed 3 September 2012.
- Casino Advisory Panel. (2007). Final report of the Casino Advisory Panel, UK Government Department for Culture Media and Sport. http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20090213101914/. http://culture.gov.uk/cap/publications/finalreportcap_300107.pdf. Accessed 3 September 2012.
- Clark, A., & Muir, H. (2007). Be vigilant when dealing with Kerzner, gaming chief tells Britain. The Guardian, February 3. http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2007/feb/03/communities.gambling1. Accessed 3 September 2012.
- DeColle, S., & York, J. G. (2009). Why wine is not glue? The unresolved problem of negative screening in socially responsible investing. Journal of Business Ethics, 85(Suppl 1), 83–95.Google Scholar
- Deegan, C. (2002). The legitimating effect of social and environmental disclosures: A theoretical foundation. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 15(3), 281–311.Google Scholar
- Du, S., & Vieira, E. T. (2012), Striving for legitimacy through corporate social responsibility: Insights from oil companies. Journal of Business Ethics (in press).Google Scholar
- Eisenhardt, K. M. (1989). Building theories from case study research. Academy of Management Review, 14(4), 532–550.Google Scholar
- Erkama, N., & Vaara, E. (2010). Struggles over legitimacy in global organizational restructuring: A rhetorical perspective on legitimation strategies and dynamics in a shutdown case. Organization Studies, 31(7), 813–839.Google Scholar
- Freeman, E. R. (2007). Building an ethical America. Philadelphia, PA: Society for Business Ethics Annual Meeting.Google Scholar
- Hannan, M. T., & Carroll, G. R. (1992). Dynamics of organizational populations: Density, legitimation and competition. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- Jepperson, R. L. (1991). Institutions, institutional effects, and institutionalism. In W. W. Powell & P. J. DiMaggio (Eds.), The new institutionalism in organizational analysis (pp. 143–163). Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
- Kindt, J. W. (2006). Testimony before the subcommittee on crime, terrorism, and homeland security. United States House of Representatives. Legislative Hearing on H.R 4777: The Internet Gambling Prohibition Act, April 5.Google Scholar
- Kostova, T., & Zaheer, S. (1999). Organizational legitimacy under conditions of complexity: The case of the multinational enterprise. Academy of Management Review, 24(1), 64–81.Google Scholar
- Lincoln, Y. S., & Guba, E. (1985). Naturalistic inquiry. Beverly Hills, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
- McCracken, G. (1986). The long interview. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
- Meyer, J., & Scott, W. R. (1983). Organizational environments: Ritual and rationality. Beverly Hills, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
- Miles, M., & Huberman, A. M. (1994). Qualitative data analysis. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
- Miller, R., & Michelson, G. (2012). Fixing the game? Legitimacy, morality policy and research in gambling. Journal of Business Ethics (in press).Google Scholar
- Oliver, C. (1991). Strategic responses to institutional processes. Academy of Management Review, 16(1), 145–179.Google Scholar
- Patton, M. (2002). Qualitative research and evaluation methods (3d ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
- Perrow, C. (1984). Normal accidents: Living with high-risk technologies. New York, NY: Basic Books.Google Scholar
- Pettigrew, A. M. (1985). Contextualist research and the study of organizational change processes. In E. E. Lawler Jr, et al. (Eds.), Doing research that is useful for theory and practice (pp. 222–248). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.Google Scholar
- Pfeffer, J. (1981). Management as symbolic action: The creation and maintenance of organizational paradigms. In L. L. Cummings & B. M. Staw (Eds.), Research in organizational behavior (pp. 1–52, Vol. 13). Greenwich, CT: JAI Press.Google Scholar
- Pfeffer, J., & Salancik, G. R. (1978). The external control of organizations: A resource dependence perspective. New York, NY: Harper and Row.Google Scholar
- Reast, J., Lindgreen, A., Vanhamme, J., & Maon, F. (2010). The Manchester super casino: Experience and learning in a cross-sector social partnerships. Journal of Business Ethics, 94(Suppl. 1), 197–218.Google Scholar
- Strauss, A., & Corbin, J. (1998). Basics of qualitative research: Techniques and procedures for developing grounded theory. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
- Suchman, M. C. (1995). Managing legitimacy: Strategic and institutional approaches. Academy of Management Review, 20(3), 571–610.Google Scholar
- Suddaby, R., & Greenwood, R. (2005). Rhetorical strategies of legitimacy. Administrative Science Quarterly, 50(1), 35–67.Google Scholar
- Tost, L. P. (2011). An integrative model of legitimacy judgments. Academy of Management Review, 36(4), 686–710.Google Scholar
- Wansell, G. (2007). The vulgar tycoon who loves, boxing, blondes … and buying influence. January: Daily Mail. 30.Google Scholar
- Wilson, A., & West, C. (1981). The marketing of ‘unmentionables’. Harvard Business Review, 51(1), 91–102.Google Scholar
- Yin, R. (2003). Case study research (3d ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
- Zimmerman, M., & Zeitz, G. (2002). Beyond survival: Achieving new venture growth by building legitimacy. Academy of Management Review, 2(3), 414–431.Google Scholar