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Executive remuneration consultancy in the UK: exploring a professional project through the lens of institutional work

Adamson, M and Manson, S and Zakaria, I (2014) 'Executive remuneration consultancy in the UK: exploring a professional project through the lens of institutional work.' Journal of Professions and Organization, 2 (1). pp. 19-37. ISSN 2051-8803

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This article responds to recent calls to examine the development of professionalism through the lens of institutional theory. We investigate the development of the new professional service of executive remuneration consultancy (ERC) in the UK through the lens of institutional work. Specifically, drawing upon Lawrence and Suddaby (2006) and Suddaby and Viale (2011), we explore the relationship between macro-scale occupational/organizational and micro-scale individual-level dynamics of the ERC professional project and situate its development in relation to the broader field of executive remuneration practices. We show that the institutional work of creating the new professional project is contested and that the ERC development may be better understood as part of broader efforts to create and maintain the institution of executive pay-setting practices. We argue that the institutional work lens has the potential to produce a more nuanced understanding of the internal dynamics of the ERC professionalization process and its role in reconfiguring broader institutional arrangements. By exploring the analytical purchase of the concept of institutional work, the article contributes to the emerging body of empirical evidence outlining the potential of (neo-) institutional approaches to offer a more productive understanding of contemporary professionalism.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: professional project institutional work executive remuneration consultants professionalization emerging professions neo-institutional theory
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > HD28 Management. Industrial Management
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences
Faculty of Social Sciences > Essex Business School
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 19 Nov 2014 10:03
Last Modified: 06 Jan 2022 13:35

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