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1. In politics, rule by a foreign power, even if masked by a puppet government. For example, Nazi Germany imposed heterarchy on France during World War II despite the presence of the Vichy government.

2. In human relations, governance in which no single participant has direct power over others, but in which any participant may come to possess such power. Heterarchy is very complicated and is marked by multiple, overlapping or even contradictory power structures. It may be contrasted with a hierarchy, but one may exist within the other.


an ORGANIZATION without a HIERARCHY or leader. All members of the organization have equal authority and involvement in decision-making. Such an organizational form is difficult to sustain beyond the smallest organizations because of the need to coordinate the organization's activities. See WORKERS' COOPERATIVE.
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I am familiar with the idea of a hierarchy, the ordered system of structure in which the most important are at the top, but I have not heard of a heterarchy.
By Richard Quest/CNN I learned a new word today: Heterarchy.
Assumptions of hierarchy and heterarchy, with application to the management of the multinational corporation.
In the new governance construal of the pollution inventory approach, the regulator appears as merely one actor in a broader network of social forces, while governance emerges through a heterarchy of diverse stakeholders, both public and private, each of whom participates in distinct but intersecting ways in an ongoing social interaction.
We invite readers to explore theoretical concepts such as emergence, holism, mutual causality, indeterminism, polarity thinking, irreducibility, quantum physics logic (nonlinear dynamics and novelty), heterarchy, and the butterfly effect, all of which suggest ways of thinking that can offer creative solutions to some of our most challenging problems.
Constitutional Heterarchy the centrality of conflict in the European Union and the United States", en Ruling the world?
7) For the concepts of heterarchy and network in legal scholarship, see Gunther Teubner, "And if I by Beelzebub Cast out Devils, .
It is about the move from countryside to metropolis, from unum to pluribus, from hierarchy to heterarchy in all aspects of cultural and economic life.
The next generation of assembling systems is of hybrid type, which combines two basic control structures and principles: a centralized control system, based on the hierarchy, and a self-organizing control system, based on the heterarchy.
Policy coordination and effective heterarchy in the subnational processes of institutional re-scaling: the case of the Province of Cordoba, Argentina.