The primary hypothesis that I will endeavor to support is that leveraging the benefits of network organization constitutes a new source of power and a new way of accomplishing global governance. As individuals and groups engage each other globally, the locus of global governance shifts from state-centered activities to distributed networks. The cumulative effect of the shift from hierarchies to networks is a system of overlapping spheres of authority and regimes of collective action called “panarchy.”
Complexity + Networks + Connectivity => Panarchy
In this paper, I have shown that the convergence of processes crosses a critical threshold to create new possibilities for governance. The result is a new system. The key distinction between the old system and the new lies in the fact that governance in the old system was achieved through states, whereas in the new system it is not only achieved outside of hierarchies through horizontal networks, but is in fact often achieved in spite of hierarchies.