Status: Insights from Organizational Sociology
Posted: 16 Jul 2012
Date Written: August 2012
Status has become an increasingly influential concept in the fields of organizational and economic sociology during the past two decades. Research in this area has not only helped explain behavior within and between organizations, but has also contributed to our understanding of status processes more generally. In this review, we point to the contributions of this field in terms of the determinants of status, the effects of status, and the mechanisms by which these effects are produced. We next appraise the way in which a network approach has contributed to our formal understanding of status positions and status hierarchies. We then highlight recent studies that demonstrate the value of studying the structures of status hierarchies themselves rather than focusing solely on the actors within them. After suggesting potential directions for future research, we conclude by calling for renewed efforts to translate concepts and theories across levels of analysis and substantive commitment in order to build more general theories of status processes.
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