Nils Brunsson

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Nils Brunsson
Born (1946-12-26) December 26, 1946 (age 74)
Academic work

Nils Gustav Magnus Brunsson (born 1946) is a Swedish organizational theorist, and Professor in Management at Uppsala University. He is most known for his works in the field of new institutionalism, such as "The organization of hypocrisy" (1989),[3] "The reforming organization" (1993)[4] and "A world of standards" (2010).[5]


Brunsson obtained his MSc in economics in 1969 at the Gothenburg School of Economics and Commercial Law, where he in 1976 also obtained his PhD in economics (Ekon Dr) and his habilitation (Docent) in 1979.[1]

Brunsson started his academic career at the Gothenburg School of Economics in 1969 as Research assistant, and was named Assistant professor at the Gothenburg University in 1976. In 1979 he moved to the Uppsala University, where he was appointed Assistant professor. The next year in 1980 he moved to the Stockholm School of Economics, where he was appointed Associate professor. In 1982 he was appointed Professor, City of Stockholm Chair in Public Management as successor of Thomas Thorburn, and chair of the Department of Public management at Stockholm School of Economics, where he served until 2010. In 1997 he was also appointed Professor at the European Institute for Advanced Studies in Management (EIASM), in 2007 Brunsson held the Niklas Luhmann Visiting Professor at Bielefeld University, and in 2010 he was appointed professor at Uppsala University, holding the Chair of Management.

Brunsson was a co-founder of the Scandinavian Consortium for Organizational Research (Scancor) and a board member from 1988 to 1997. In 1992 he participated in founding the Stockholm Centre for Organizational Research (Score) where he was chairman from the start to 2008.[6]

Brunsson was elected a member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences in 1990. He was appointed honorary member of European Group of Organization Studies (EGOS) in 2009. He was the chairman of the Swedish Academy of Management 2010 - 2011.

Brunsson's research includes studies of decision-making, administrative reforms, standardization and organization outside organizations. He is now working with the organization of markets.


  • Brunsson, Nils. The irrational organization: Irrationality as a basis for organizational action and change. John Wiley & Sons, 1985.
  • Brunsson, Nils. The organization of hypocrisy: talk, decisions and actions in organizations. (1989).
  • Brunsson, Nils, and Johan P. Olsen. The reforming organization. (1993).
  • Brunsson, Nils, and Bengt Jacobsson. A world of standards. (2000).
  • Brunsson, Nils. The organization of hypocrisy. (2002).
  • Brunsson, Nils. "Mechanisms of Hope" (2006).
  • Brunsson, Nils. "The Consequences of Decision-Making" (2007).
  • Brunsson, Nils. "Reform as Routine" (2009).

Articles, a selection:

  • Brunsson, Nils, and Kerstin Sahlin-Andersson. "Constructing organizations: The example of public sector reform." Organization studies 21.4 (2000): 721-746.


  1. ^ a b CV Nils Brunsson (158 Kb) at, accessed 2015.02.02.
  2. ^ "Nils Gustaf Magnus Brunsson". Retrieved 2018-03-07.
  3. ^ Pollitt, Christopher, and Geert Bouckaert. Public Management Reform: A Comparative Analysis: A Comparative Analysis. Oxford university press, 1999.
  4. ^ Peters, B. Guy. Institutional theory in political science: the new institutionalism. Bloomsbury Publishing USA, 2011.
  5. ^ Beck, Ulrich. World at risk. Polity, 2009.
  6. ^ Linders, Ann (September 20, 2012). "Nils Brunsson - Stockholm centre for organizational research". Retrieved 2013-11-29.

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