Swiss Journal of Sociology (Nov 2023)

Digitalisation as Distinction? Identity Articulation and Tacit Competition in the Swiss University Field, 2010–2020

  • Tratschin Luca,
  • Rost Katja,
  • Leder Christian

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 49, no. 3
pp. 541 – 566


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This article examines how digitalisation is used for organisational distinction in the field of Swiss universities for the period 2010–2020. It shows that digitalisation does not fundamentally challenge the order of the Swiss university field but triggers competitive dynamics that are accompanied by different forms of identity articulation. The article concludes that the interplay of competition and identity articulation of actors is complex and must be analyzed in the context of relative field positions.