Institutional logic and scholars’ reactions to performance measurement in universities

Kirsi-Mari Kallio, Tomi J. Kallio, Giuseppe Grossi, Janne Engblom

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)
13 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Purpose – Employing institutional logic and institutional work as its theoretical framework, this study analyzes scholars’ reactions to performance measurement systems in academia. Design/methodology/approach – Large datasets were collected over time, combining both quantitative and qualitative elements. The data were gathered from a two-wave survey in 2010 (966 respondents) and 2015 (672 respondents), conducted among scholars performing teaching- and research-oriented tasks in three Finnish universities.Findings – The analysis showed statistically significant changes over time in the ways that the respondents were positioned in three major groups influenced by different institutional logics. This study contributes to the international debate on institutional change in universities by showing that in Finnish universities, emerging business logics and existing professional logics can co-exist and be blended among a growing group of academics. The analysis of qualitative open-ended answers suggests that performance measurement systems have led to changes in institutional logic, which have influenced the scholars participating in institutional work at the microlevel in academia.Social implications – While most scholars remain critical of performance measurement systems in universities, the fact that many academics are adapting to performance measurement systems highlights significant changes that are generally occurring in academia.Originality/value – While most extant studies have focused on field- and organizational-level analyses, this study focuses on understanding how the adoption of performance measurement systems affects institutional logic and institutional work at the microlevel. Moreover, the study’s cross-sectional research setting increases society’s understanding of institutional evolution in academia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)104-130
Number of pages27
JournalAccounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal
Volume34
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Swedish Standard Keywords

  • Business Administration (50202)

Keywords

  • Academic work
  • Hybridity
  • Institutional logics
  • Institutional work
  • Performance measurement
  • Universities

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