Terms I generally use synonymously. Certain variances in meaning relate to the degree of generality, or the special limitation to a segment of society. The most general terms are “institution“ and “organization”. They refer to all organizations existing in a society, no matter what kind or legal form. The terms “company“ and “corporation” essentially belong to the business sector. Whenever no specific hints are provided, it will be clear from the context what I am referring to when using each of these terms.

The terms most frequently used in this book are “organization“ and some terms related to the corporate context, such as „corporate policies“. The explanations provided will usually be applicable to all kinds of institutions. According to the field of usage, the terms might need some adaptation, such as “educational policy” or “health policy”.

In addition to the meaning explained above, in the sense that “an institution is an organization”, the term “organization” can also be used in the sense that “an institution has an organization” (or organization structure). It should be clear from the particular context which one of the two meanings it is.