An Institutional Perspective of Organizative Sustainability: The Case of the LA21 in Spain
Rocío Llamas-Sánchez
Inmaculada Martín-Tapia
Víctor J. García-Morales
Francisco J. López-Martín
Departamento de Organización de Empresas
Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y Empresariales
Universidad de Granada
Campus Cartuja, s/n.
Granada 18071.
Tfo. +34 958 24 09 16 Fax: + 34 958 24 62 22.

 E-mail:              rllamas@ugr.es

This paper examines how organizations respond to changes in the institutional environment in which they are embedded. In particular, we analyze how the Spanish Local Councils are responding to the institutional pressures from different levels (world, European, national and autonomous levels) in order to develop practices and activities to reach sustainability. Organizative sustainability research needs a theoretical frame, such as the Institutional Theory, in order to explain institutional change processes as well as its drivers. The institutional change is the implementation of the program named “Local Agenda 21” (LA21) which has been implemented since the Earth Summit by a large number of municipalities across the world.  We propose some institutional determinants to explain the process of institutional change such as normative pressure affecting the legitimacy of these organizations, the inter-collaboration and the institutional embeddeness in the organizational field as well as the differences between the town councils which show a high implementation level of the program and those ones which show a medium level. Finally, we analyze the outcomes of the LA21, sustainable development in cities and towns and some positive organizative internal changes.

All Submissions
7:00 AM-5:00 PM, Thursday, 28 April 2005, Oral

The Netherlands 2005 Meeting