Functional Organizational Fields

There are various definitions of functional fields in the literature. Hirsch (1972) defines the industry system in his study of publishing houses, movie studios, and recording companies. Scott and Meyer uses the concept of societal sector as the collection of organizations that critically influence the focal organization (suppliers, customers, owners, regulators, competitors, etc.) Dimaggio and Powell (1983) define the organizational field as "those organizations that, in the aggregate, constitute a recognized area of institutional life"

Studies in this area have been primarily by resource dependence, institutionalist, and Marxist perspectives. In a sense, these fields above can be seen as forming a large part of the focal organization's environment.