How do small ‘non‐compliant’ firms (those evading existing regulations) react to further regulatory change? The impact of the National Living Wage in the UK in 2016 is analysed through 22 mostly longitudinal case studies of small non‐compliant firms. The varied responses, endurance of non‐compliance, and blurred and dynamic nature of transitions to compliance are discussed through the lens of institutional approaches to informality. The analysis sheds new light on the relative autonomy of micro processes and the conditions under which external forces affect these processes. Non‐compliant informality, as a persisting feature of small business, is unlikely to be transformed by legal regulation alone.
Bibliographical note© 2019 The Author. British Journal of Management published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of British Academy of Management
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