TCI2013 Mobilizing stakeholders through legitimation strategies


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By Anna Emmoth & Jörgen Elbe, Dalarna University, Sweden, presented at the 16th TCI Global Conference, Kolding 2013.

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TCI2013 Mobilizing stakeholders through legitimation strategies

  1. 1. Mobilizing Stakeholders through Legitimation Strategies Anna Emmoth & Jörgen Elbe Academic Summit: Clusters as entrepreneurial ecosystems 5 September 2013
  2. 2. Mobilizing Stakeholders through Legitimation Strategies – The Formation of a Tourist Destination Cluster Initiative Jörgen Elbe Anna Emmoth
  3. 3. The Research • How mobilizing cluster stakeholders? • Longitudinal case study • Multiple data sources: Interviews, observations, documents • Qualitative interpretation – abductive approach
  4. 4. Case Study Background • Regional tourism development initiative: • Destination Dalarna: One region – five destinations • Hundreds of businesses– a few ”locomotives” but mainly SMEs • Huged planned investment – stagnating domestic market = need to attract foreign markets (overcapacity?) • Solution: cluster initiative with one brand, joint marketing and a joint sales platform • Regional tourism developer as cluster facilitator
  5. 5. General Prerequisites • Cluster facilitator: • Limited budget • No formal authority • Many different and important stakeholders: • Local businesses, residents, funding agencies, governments, academic institutions… • In different organizational fields with different institutional logics • Legitimacy • A crucial resource in order to mobilize resources and support
  6. 6. A Conceptual Framework • Three types of legitimacy (Suchman,1995): • Moral: Being perceived as a legitimate representative • Pragmatic: Being perceived as a commercially interesting and legitimate partner • Cognitive: Taken for granted structures in the society, i.e. is the cluster/industry perceived as legitimate • Rhetoric as a mean (Suddaby & Geenwood, 2005; Aristotle) • Logos: Arguments referring to what appears to be logical • Pathos: Arguments referring to emotions and moral • Ethos: Arguments referring to the perceived authority of the presenter • Strategic legitimation approaches (based on Suchman, 1995) • Conforming: Adapting arguments to stakeholders’ existing institutional logics • Manipulating: Try to influence the stakeholders’ perception • …or seek stakeholders in another field
  7. 7. Analysis scheme - example Stakeholder Type of approach Rhetorical style Resource Type of legitimacy Associated themes Quotes by regional DMO directed to stakeholder Funding agencies Local DMOs Local businesses Conforming Manipulating Manipulating Logos Pathos Ethos National development funds Support Support Cognitive Moral Pragmatic Cluster – innovation – growth External threats – increased global competition – joint challenges Business benefits through collaboration “Today there is a common understanding in the region to enhance the co-operation between industry actors. The aim is that the industry will take a step forward toward more refined products, better distribution channels, more intense national and international sales and more efficient processes. The goal is to develop a regional cluster which can be part of a national innovation system.” (application for funding) ”Our region is the fourth largest tourist region in Sweden. We have a strong destination but we have not developed in the pace as other destinations in Sweden and therefore we risk losing visitors to destinations that develop better and faster.” (project description) “We have come together since we believe in Dalarna as a region. We have an interesting brand, and we have numerous of companies with exciting ideas and they will be in the forefront when the destinations and products of the future are developed”. (Project information web page)
  8. 8. The conceptual framework – an analytic and strategic tool Required resources Stakeholders Type of approach Rhetorical style Legitimacy obtained Funding, competency, skills, support Businesses, tourists, residents, governments, NGOs, funding agencies, academic institutions Conforming or manipulating Logos, pathos, ethos Moral, pragmatic, cognitive,
  9. 9. Thank you! Contact: Jörgen Elbe Dalarna University