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Decentralized organizations or decentralization often emerges spontaneously and quickly during a social crisis. Organizations that follow decentralized principles and whose structure aims to level power between team members leave great autonomy to activists. Movements that come from the most decentralization are those that are uncoordinated and that spread spontaneously during a crisis. It is possible that this is subsequently (more or less) coordinated by a group that emerges from the movement. It will then be slightly centralized (as soon as there is coordination, there is a form of centralization). -This is an Uprising by Paul and Mark Engler and the HUB

Examples of decentralization

Black lives matter (protests that became a distributed movement)

  • The black lives matter movement originated as a social media hashtag #BlackLivesMatter in response to the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the US, who shot 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in 2013. [1]  
  • The first black lives matter protest was organized by Alicia Garza, Patricia Cullors and Opal Tometi in response to the murders of Mike Brown and Eric Garner. [2]
  • The co-founders waived formal leadership titles when a chapter structure was created, thus their lack of structure allows chapters across North America to contribute independently and interdependently with others. [3]

Occupy Movement

  • Occupy also originated from a social media hashtag, #OccupyWallStreet. [4]
  • Hundreds of city chapters sprung up to reinforce and strengthen one another, yet their groups remained independent, leaderless and did not need to report to one another. [5]
Idle No More
  • Idle No More "started in November 2012, among Treaty People in Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta protesting the Canadian government’s dismantling of environmental protection laws, endangering First Nations who live on the land." -Idle No More [6]
  • It's actions remain independent and decentralized; decisions are made by individual groups holding actions, and the types of actions held are determined by regional organizers.

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