Standardization as Institutional Work: The Regulatory Power of a Responsible Investment Standard

Jeremy Moon, Rieneke Slager, Jean-Pascal Gond

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


This paper conceptualizes standardization as institutional work to study the emergence of a standard and the deployment of its regulatory power. We rely on unique access to longitudinal archival data for exploring how the FTSE4Good index, a responsible investment index, emerged as a standard for socially responsible corporate behavior. Our results show how three types of standardization work – calculative framing, engaging and valorizing – support the design, legitimation and monitoring processes whereby a standard acquires its regulatory power. Our findings reveal new facets in the dynamics of standardization by approaching standardization as a product of institutional work and in showing how unintended consequences of that work can be recaptured to
Original languageEnglish
JournalOrganization Studies
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)763-790
Publication statusPublished - May 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Institutional Work
  • Legitimacy
  • Regulatory Power
  • Responsible Investment
  • Standardization

Cite this