by Jay Lund
The graphic below seems to apply to any bureaucracy, with larger bureaucracies showing this tendency more strongly. In this vortex conception of management, one can often make more progress from the periphery than from the center of power.
The center spins rapidly, always changing directions, but moving little in space. Those in the periphery can go a greater distance. Being in the center is more exciting and prestigious, but not necessarily more productive.
This analogy came to me while working in the Washington, DC area, where I encountered an abundance of very smart hard-working people, who seemed to accomplish little due to opposition from a high density of very smart hard-working people.
Almost all innovations in water and water management come from the periphery.