Methodological institutionalism and the importance of meso-level of social analysis

Kirdina-Chandler S.G.

Dr. Sci. (Sociol.), Chief Researcher, Head of the sector for the evolution of social and economic systems, Institute of Economics of Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, Russia.

ID of the Article: 5867

For citation:

Kirdina-Chandler S.G. Methodological institutionalism and the importance of meso-level of social analysis. Sotsiologicheskie issledovaniya [Sociological Studies]. 2015. No 12. P. 51-59


This inquiry emphasizes the importance of the meso-level for social analysis. We consider the micro- meso- and macro-levels of social analysis and relate these to the institutionalist approaches for sociology and economics. We cite numerous studies that understand the “mesolevel” as a space of rules’ formation in which micro-level actors interact. Their interacting then generates macrostructures taking on their own distinct characteristics, and are thus not reducible to the properties of their constituent elements. For the micro-level of social analysis a principle of methodological individualism is relevant, where as holism principle is significant for the macrolevel. In addition two mentioned principles we promote a new perspective of social analysis that we define as “methodological/ institutionalism”. Its content, as well as applications are considered in the paper.

holism; meso-level social analysis; methodological individualism; methodological institutionalism
Content No 12, 2015