Tradition in organizations: A custodianship framework

Tina Dacin, Peter Dacin, Derin Kent

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


The study of tradition has become increasingly important in management research explaining phenomena as diverse as socialization, identity, institutional maintenance, and field-level change. Whereas recent studies bring new insights, management scholars’ conceptualization of tradition suffers from a lack of theoretical integration. In this article, we identify the major perspectives on tradition used in the literature and propose an integrative “custodianship framework” that encourages researchers to examine stability and change in organizational traditions by considering the perspectives, interests, and power of custodians surrounding a tradition over time. We suggest that future research explicitly consider the importance of place as both the rootedness and emplacement of traditions motivate the need for custodianship.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)342-373
Number of pages32
JournalAcademy of Management Annals
Issue number1
Early online date1 Nov 2018
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2019
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Organization
  • Culture
  • Socialization
  • Identity


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