Cfp_Score International Conference on Organizing Markets

Call for Papers. Score International Conference on Organizing Markets. October 16-17, 2014. Stockholm School of Economics, Stockholm, Sweden. Abstract submission Deadline: March 31, 2014. Organized by Stockholm Centre for Organizational Research (Score). Keynote speaker: Neil Fligstein, University of California, Berkeley.

Markets are sometimes described as alternatives to organizations. But markets and or-ganization may also go well together – typically markets are highly organized phenomena. The order in markets is not only created by processes of mutual adjustment between sellers and buyers (as described in economics) or by common institutions (as empha-sized in market sociology); market order is also created by organization. This is easy to see when markets are organized as formal organizations, for instance as stock exchanges. But also markets outside formal organizations are organized, at least to some extent.

Markets attract many organizers. Some of these actors set standards for products, pro-duction processes, or for how sellers shall organize themselves. Others monitor sellers or buyers, for instance how they comply to standards or other rules or their financial situation. Yet others, use various forms of sanctions, such as awards or boycotts. Trade organizations and others offer membership to market actors and sometimes hierarchical authority can be used for enforcing rules, monitoring and membership. Sellers, buyers, social movements, various mediators and states are all actual or potential market organizers.

Processes and consequences of market organization are different from processes and consequences of mutual adjustment or institutionalization. Theories that have been developed for understanding formal organizations may be useful for understanding markets as well, and more specifically to understand how markets are organized.

For this conference we invite papers on aspects of market organization. For instance, the papers may discuss the role of organization in creating markets, how markets are re-organized, the organizing attempts of various market organizers and the effects of market organization. Both empirical and theoretical papers are welcome.

Papers may, but do not have to, include any of the more specific themes listed below:

1. Evolving views of and approaches to markets – from free markets to pure markets?

What is seen as acceptable market organization has varied over time. For instance, in the late 19th century the focus was on ‘free’ markets in which the state should organize less while corporations were allowed to organize more, for instance by way of cartels, trusts and standardization. In contemporary discussion the notion of the ‘pure’ market is ideal-ized, where organizing activities should be kept at a minimum and foremost handled by states. What has caused these changes and what practical effects has it had in various markets and various countries? This track invites papers that discuss market practices and ideals, their transformations over time, how they are tied in with different actors, what the connections between market ideals and market practice have looked like, and how they have evolved.

2. Value conflicts in market organization

Market organizing is often connected to, legitimized by, and believed to be propelled by, values such as efficiency and functionality. However, other values are also involved in shaping markets, e.g. sustainability, safety, decency, public health, rule of law, welfare (human and animal) and democracy. Many markets are characterized by value complexity, which sometimes is reinforced and turned into open conflicts, but which may also be played down in configurations that neutralize, align, balance, or hierarchize values. This track invites papers that discuss questions like: Which values appear on which markets, how and why? Which values do not appear? Who brings various values to the scene? How are value conflicts handled and how do they influence market organizing?

3. The organization of legitimate markets:  Transparency, measurability, and accountability

In both national and transnational markets, legitimacy is a pivotal problem. Markets are vulnerable to criticism from a number of stakeholders, not least the media. Products, production conditions, and profit distribution are often questioned as to their legitimacy. Examples of markets that have attracted criticism are tobacco markets, schooling markets, and markets for elderly care. Processes of audit is one way to ensure legitimate markets by way of providing transparency, safeguarding stability, measurability predictability, and to hold actors accountable. This track invites papers that shed light on the organization of legitimate markets: Who are the organizers of legitimate markets? What legitimizing processes are promoted and how are they motivated? What hinders markets from becoming legitimized? What ideals for legitimacy do they produce and which or-ganisational processes do they set in motion? How does power enter into these pro-cesses?

4. Crises, markets and organization

In times of market crisis, attention is turned to various ways of organizing markets. Rules and monitoring were at the forefront of political discussions after the financial crisis in 2008. To this track we invite papers that treat the various ways in which organization, market and crisis are interlinked. What are the similarities and dissimilarities between organizational crisis and market crisis, and what can be learned from comparing them? Can we use knowledge drawn from crises and reforms in organization to analyse what happens on markets, or vice versa? Why or why not? Can crisis in markets be solved through organization and can crisis in organizations be solved through markets? In what respect can theories about organizations and organizing be used to understand market crisis?

5. Standardization as market organization

A common way to organize markets is by way of standards. Accounting standards, codes of conduct, environmental standards and other kinds of rules are used to ensure a degree of stability and accountability in markets. There is now a formidable industry of standard-setters and a rich repertoire of standards offered by large number of actors. Market actors may choose to follow certain standards, or they may choose to implement their own tools. They may re-organize themselves internally to facilitate standardization procedures, or they may enter into new constellations with other organizations, such as meta-organizations. When do buyers and sellers, respectively, try to set up standards? To this track, we invite papers that discuss the variety of forms of standardization available for market actors, why certain formats are chosen before others, and what new formats are emerging. We invite discussions about the core assumptions underlying forms of standardization, and the organizational implications of their usage.

6. Markets in tandem? Exploring ‘side markets’ – new markets as a response to market failure?

Markets that are perceived to be problematic, in some sense malfunctioning or even fail-ures, typically inspire attempts at changing their organization. But another response is to organize a new market, a ‘side market’ designed to rectify the problems of the problematic market. Examples of such side markets include markets for emissions, markets for responsible gaming devices, markets for pension investment advice, markets for career coaching, and markets for certifiers. Who creates side markets, when and why? How do side markets evolve over time? In what relation do they stand to the market they are set up to rectify? What consequences do they bring, to what degree do they help reduce the perceived problems of the markets they are supposed to correct? We welcome empirical cases and theoretical elaborations that help make sense of what seems a bit unexpected: more market as a response to market failure.


The process of submission will be in two steps: first an abstract of approximately 300 words should be submitted. All abstracts will be reviewed for relevance and quality. Authors whose abstracts are accepted will be invited to send in a full paper.

Please submit your abstract and manuscript by email to

Deadline of abstract submission is March 31, 2014 and one month later a notification of acceptance will be made. Deadline for submission of full paper is September 15, 2014.


We are planning for joint publications of selected papers for the authors who are willing to participate.


March 31, 2014            Submission Deadline

April 30, 2014               Notification of Acceptance or Rejection

September 15, 2014    Deadline for Registration and Final Submission of Full Papers

October 16-17, 2014   Conference Dates


Score International Conference on Organizing Markets will be held at Stockholm School of Economics, Sveavägen 65 at the center of Stockholm Thursday October 16 to Friday October 17, 2014. Please observe that this is a full two days conference starting early Oct 16 and ending late Oct 17. Thus, we recommend that you should plan to arrive in Stockholm Oct 15 at the latest and leave on Oct 18 at the earliest.


(includes lunches and the conference dinner on Friday October 17)

Faculty        Students and Post Docs

Before 1 June                                €90                                     €80

Before 15 September                  €120                                   €100

After 15 September                     €150                                   €120

Bank name and adress:

Handelsbanken Sveavagen

Box 3173

103 63 Stockholm Bank Account: 443 169 748

IBAN: SE77 6000 0000 0000 0004 4316 9748



All manuscripts submissions should be emailed to

If you have additional questions, check the Conference Web site or please contact the conference staff at or telephone +46(0)8 736 95 25.


Score International Conference on Organizing Markets Web site:

Most welcome!

The Organizing Committee

Patrik Aspers (Professor of Sociology, Uppsala University and Score)

Nils Brunsson (Professor of Management, Uppsala University and Score)

Christina Garsten (Professor of Social Antropology, Stockholm University and Score and Copenhagen Business School)

Kristoffer Strandqvist (Dr, Stockholm School of Economics and Score)

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