The Finnish social philosopher Arvid Aulin has made an attempt to develop a theory of social progress based on cybernetic principles. In his sociocybernetics two fundamental concepts are “self‐steering” of actors and “hierarchy” in social systems. Emancipation processes are directed towards an increase of self‐steering and a decrease of outside steering of human actors. In his “Law of the Requisite Hierarchy”, Aulin formulates a negative relationship between the production level of a society and its optimal level of hierarchy; the higher the production per capita, the lower the necessary amount of hierarchy for that society; democracy flourishes as the economy grows. In this paper his arguments for and the consequences, especially for developing countries, of this fundamental law of sociocybernetics, are discussed.
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