Prof. Dr. Guido Möllering
Market Constitution and Collective Institutional Entrepreneurship
This project investigates how new markets for semiconductor manufacturing technologies and solar power technologies are currently constituted. In both markets, actors face incalculable investment decisions because they want to participate in promising but unknown markets. The empirical results show that markets are realized when this uncertainty is reduced sufficiently. In the new markets studied, the constitution of markets as exchange systems involves not only product development but social arrangements at the actor, network and institutional levels as well. The project’s qualitative research reveals various efforts by market actors who organize social networks with the aim of shaping not only the content (products) but also the rules (institutions) of market exchanges. The range of organizational forms involved in this "collective institutional entrepreneurship" include consortia and associations which are large and open when developing markets are seeking legitimacy, and small and closed when competitive positions within a possible configuration are established. The findings show that markets do not simply emerge naturally, nor are they mainly created heroically by individual entrepreneurs. Rather, they are largely the result of ongoing collective efforts to reduce uncertainty so that competition becomes dynamic and sustainable. Project duration: April 2005 to December 2010.
Path-Creating Networks: Innovating Next Generation Lithography in Germany and the U.S.
The semiconductor industry faces the challenge of overcoming the physical and economic limitations of current production systems and the path dependency of established technologies by creating new technological paths. This can only be achieved through collective and cooperative efforts by various actors who, at the same time, compete in markets and between regions. This preparatory study at the FU berlin (Prof. Sydow) and TU Berlin (Prof. Windeler), sponsored by the Volkswagen-Stiftung, is set to identify and analyse potential paths, key actors, existing constellations and appropriate research methods in this field.
Timing incl. Preperatory Study: 08/2003 to 09/2010. GM until 03/2005.
Untersuchungen zur Typologie sozialer Kompetenzentwicklungsnetzwerke
Sponsor: BMBF. Timing: 11/2001 to 12/2002.
See Sydow, J./Duschek, S./Möllering, G./Rometsch, M. (2003): Kompetenzentwicklung in Netzwerken: Eine typologische Studie. Wiesbaden: Westdeutscher Verlag.
Trust as a Mechanism of Economic Coordination
Trust addresses the fundamental problem of forming positive expectations despite actors’ uncertainty and vulnerability in their interactions with other actors. In economic sociology, trust is a key concept the classic authors in the field recognized early on. However, the full range of roles trust plays in economic relationships has only recently been studied. Projects at the MPIfG investigating trust aim to understand and explain the foundations of trust as a coordination mechanism. An interdisciplinary approach enables researchers to integrate individual findings within a general framework which, in turn, generates new research questions. This theoretical work is linked to empirical research looking, for example, at countries such as China, the Philippines, Turkey and Ukraine, where institution-based trust is lacking and has to be compensated for by personal networks and active trust development. Rather than reducing it to calculativeness, the overall approach adopted in these projects analyzes trust from pragmatist and constitution-theoretical perspectives.