From Unconventional to Ordinary? The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Homogenizing Effects of International Development Cooperation

Adam Moe Fejerskov

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


The majority of the literature on new actors in development cooperation explores how these alter the field. This article presents a reverse case of how the strong homogenizing norms and principles of international development may turn an unconventional development actor into something quite conventional and more alike to well-established actors. Drawing on insights from institutional theory, it examines organizational changes in the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation from formation until today and argues that the foundation has progressed from a state of intentional isolation to one of actively engaging in and adhering to the field’s norm and principle-setting.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of International Development
Issue number7
Pages (from-to)1098–1112
Publication statusPublished - 9 Sep 2015


  • New actors in development
  • Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
  • Organizational change
  • Organizational fields
  • Development cooperation
  • Development aid

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