Three essays on the creation of new markets for sustainable technologies and services

Bogdan Prokopovych, University of Rhode Island


How do actors contribute to the creation new markets? Comprised of three essays, this dissertation examines roles and strategies of actors in establishing new market structures for sustainable technologies and services in fields with different degrees of institutionalization of market practices: a market for small-scale renewable energy in Tajikistan, a bioenergy market in Germany, and a nascent market for environmental services in the US shellfish industry. In the first essay I ask why some organizations succeed when operating under conditions of weak market-supporting institutions, referred to as institutional voids, while others fail. Drawing on qualitative evidence from Tajikistan, where old Soviet institutions are no longer salient and new market-supporting institutions are underdeveloped, I explore the strategies of organizations setting up markets for small-scale renewables. I find that organizations with decentralized decision-making, those that target a broader range of institutions in their market creation strategies, and those that utilize existing networks are capable of overcoming institutional voids. In the second essay, using qualitative data from interviews with participants of the German bioenergy field, I explore the work of industry associations in the creation of new markets. I show how despite competing interests, German bioenergy associations were able to present a unified message to policymakers that fundamentally changed the regulatory institutions that led to the creation of markets for bioenergy. Finally, in the third essay I investigate the relationship between membership in shellfish industry associations and firms' participation in environmental projects. Using a dataset I collected through a survey of US shellfishermen on the East Coast, I find a positive relationship between association membership and participation in new markets. I argue that these findings show that associations can help organization-members respond to environmental and institutional conditions by extending beyond their traditional markets, thus creating a new market space.^

Subject Area

Business Administration, Marketing|Business Administration, Management|Sociology, Organization Theory|Sustainability

Recommended Citation

Bogdan Prokopovych, "Three essays on the creation of new markets for sustainable technologies and services" (2012). Dissertations and Master's Theses (Campus Access). Paper AAI3503340.