Institutionalized Communication in Markets and Firms

Wilfred Dolfsma*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Abstract: How markets and firms function is critically related to what knowledge and information is exchanged between whom, how quickly. Exchange of (symbolic) information needs to be properly institutionalized in order to be understood by others, on the one hand, but, on the other hand, cannot avoid being ambiguous to some degree as well (Dolfsma et al. 2011). Ambiguity allows for the dissent that allows for innovation in the broadest sense of the term. Institutionalization of communication is community-specific. The tension between institutionalization of and ambiguity in communication explains why innovations cannot depart too much from what is known and accepted in a community to be (ultimately) accepted as a legitimate novelty. The view of markets and firms as settings for institutionalized communication and knowledge exchange offers a perspective that institutional economists are well positioned for to offer insights on.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)341-348
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Economic Issues
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 3 Apr 2019


  • communication
  • firms as institutionalized communication
  • institutions
  • markets as institutionalized communication

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