Reply To: What is the role of power in complex systems?2018-07-04T19:50:17+00:00

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Peter NorlindhPeter Norlindh
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Post count: 14

Interesting question, Danilo.

I would like to offer a physics based interpretation, where power is an amount of work over the duration of its execution. Mapped onto the present context, that could be something like “the ability to execute an amount of work of one’s own choosing, over some duration of time”. Or, something rather.

With this definition in mind, we could say that power can be attributed not only to individual human beings, but also to the emergent entities floating around in complex networks (of human beings, for instance). Some manager of the network (the CEO of a company, for example) might transfer some micro-management power to the emergent properties of the network. This may in turn strengthen the over-all power of the network. And ultimately, the manager finds herself in command of a more powerful organization, while having less power of its detailed execution.

Peter