Is 'Peak Hierarchy' Next?

David Bollier argues that large institutions and businesses may have reached their peak, and we're headed towards a 'peer production' economy.

"In a more diversified, modular marketplace, the failure of a company is no big deal. In a concentrated market dominated by a few big players, the incentive structures are all wrong. Why innovate and compete? Why operate transparently? Why work to cultivate social trust? If sheer market power or political lobbying won't solve a problem (or steamroller over it), glitzy marketing will at least tamp it down.

Large institutions invariably find ways to leverage their powers to serve their own interests and defeat accountability – especially when their overseers (politicians and government agencies) are themselves large institutions who share the same bed. Large companies can often structure their markets and business practices in self-serving ways. They can carry out questionable dealings in the shadows. They can deploy their lobbyists to win government sanction for dubious business practices. And then, if anything goes wrong, they can invoke their sheer size and number of employees, are argue that they are too big to fail. Government must come to the rescue or the consequences for innocent third parties will be too severe."

Full Story: Not Just Peak Oil, But “Peak Hierarchy,” Too?

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