Bringing Technology and Meaning into Institutional Work: Making News at an Italian Business Newspaper

Elena Raviola, Maria Nörbäck

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


In this article we investigate the role of technology and meaning in the institutional work of newsmakers. By analysing ethnographic data from an Italian business newspaper undertaking a project integrating the print and online newsrooms, we show how technology makes certain actions possible - and even proposes action - for the journalists, in their enactment of the institution of business news. Drawing on Callon's notion of agencement and Battilana and D'Aunno's conceptualization of human agency in institutional work, our analysis shows that action is taken in the interaction between humans and non-humans, and changes in technology might trigger institutional work. The institutional work of journalists is performed by means of both old and new technologies; if new technologies trigger institutional work by proposing new actions that need to be made meaningful by the journalists, old technology functions as a 'law book', where the institution of business news is inscribed. The journalists then use this 'law book' to interpret the new actions.
Original languageEnglish
JournalOrganization Studies
Issue number8
Pages (from-to)1171-1194
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2013

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