Social Investment Market: Kuhn meets New Institutionalism – framing an emerging field

Nummela, Tomi (2012) Social Investment Market: Kuhn meets New Institutionalism – framing an emerging field. [Dissertation (University of Nottingham only)] (Unpublished)

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This study sees Social Investment Market (“SIM”) as an emerging field and surveys the relevant sector and theoretical literature to investigate the paradigmatic development of the market and to suggest institutional theory as valid research framework. UK market development and current stage is outlined and used as a background to illustrate the themes in the study. Market is summarised and followed as the flow from supply level investor decisions to demand level actors delivering social impact. Market continuum is consolidated into a holistic concept of SIM. Kuhnian observations on paradigm development are used in order to assess the market as science and as an emerging field of practice. New institutional theory context is suggested as the most relevant framework for the emerging field study and institutional entrepreneurship is introduced as one potential explanatory avenue to outline the institutional factors in play within the field.

The hybridity of the field is discussed and emphasised as it gives the field, its paradigmatic development and institutional journey a very distinct backdrop. SIM is set to occupy a space bordering and crossing existing public, private and third sectors logics that must be transcended in order for new paradigm to take hold.

From a more practical perspective it is argued that SIM maturity is a function of the market strengthening its position as an institution itself. Only when SIM forms an “asset class”, while not limited to its economic meaning - with its rules and shared meanings and becomes established logic internally and externally in the space it occupies it can claim to have become investment ready proposition in the scale needed to fulfil the social change ambition set for the field. A new paradigm - position this study seeks to promote by framing a holistic SIM perspective within the practitioner and theoretical narrative emerging from the increased interest toward the field – has lot to live up to. Ambitions for SIM run amok, while economistic fallacy still makes open and innovative development of new socio-economic structures slow and cumbersome undertaking.

Item Type: Dissertation (University of Nottingham only)
Keywords: social investment market, Kuhn, paradigm, institutional theory, framing, emerging field
Depositing User: EP, Services
Date Deposited: 07 Jan 2013 16:34
Last Modified: 19 Oct 2017 14:20

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