Decentralization or decentralisation' is the process of redistributing or dispersing functions, powers, people or things away from a central location or authority. Concepts of decentralization have been applied to group dynamics and management science in private businesses and organisations, political science, law and public administration, economics, and technology.
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- I find myself just a little annoyed at the tendency of all of us to adopt certain clichés about decentralization and then glibly announce that we're for it. I have been somewhat amused at some of my colleagues who are most vocal in expounding the virtues of decentralization and yet quite unconsciously are apt to be busily engaged in developing their own personal control over activities for which they are responsible.
- Ernest Dale, Planning and developing the company organization structure. No. 20. American Management Association, 1952. p. 18
- Anarchists reject centralization of authority and the concept of a Central Committee. All groups are free associations formed out of committees not revolutionaries disciplined by fear of authority. When the size of the work-groups (which could be fanned around Labor, fundraising, anti-racism, women’s rights, food and housing, etc.) becomes cumbersome, the organizations can be decentralized into two or several more autonomous organizations, still united in one large federation. This enables the group to expand limitlessly while maintaining its anarchic form of decentralized self-management. It is sort of like the scientific theory of a biological cell, dividing and redividing, but in a political sense.
- But it may come as a surprise to learn that for Rothbard the New Left's most "crucial contribution to both ends and means... is its concept of 'participatory democracy.'"... ; This may seem less surprising once one realizes that for Rothbard the free market is the fullest realization of participatory democracy... The political appeal of participatory democracy for Rothbard was its requirement of decentralization, and its rejection of a layer of political "representatives" above the people.
- Well, I think it just goes back to the values that I grew up with in the punk rock world because it was this decentralised world, and so we just made our own way—like we'd be antigovernment or, you know—but we really didn't complain a lot; we were more action-oriented, like, people were publishing fanzines, we were setting up shows, we were getting in vans and touring around, and we were associating with other people, so…y'know, I just like that idea.
- Krist Novoselic, interviewed by Nick Gillespie, "Nirvana's Krist Novoselic on Punk, Politics, & Why He Dumped the Dems", ReasonTV (19 June 2014), 11:43–15:10.
- Decentralized systems are the quintessential patrons of simplicity. They allow complexity to rise to a level at which it is sustainable, and no higher.
- L.K. Samuels, In Defense of Chaos: The Chaology of Politics, Economics and Human Action, Cobden Press (2013) p. 221.