How is power and authority sustained or regulated in the Gülen Movement?

Fethullah Gülen

Supporters’ efforts are not coordinated nationally, so autonomy is an important defining feature of service-networks and SMOs generally. This autonomy is achieved through delegation, creation of a specialized body of representatives, and bureaucratic and non-bureaucratic boards based on equality. For a whole range of matters related to the service-projects, decision-making is not concentrated at the top, with certain individuals only. There is a continual turnover of network or project leadership. Representatives within networks can be and are called to account at any time. The right to decide belongs to all who come to the network meetings. Free participation and self-motivated input, together with openness and responsiveness to technical and professional expertise, overcome the risk of building up oligarchies and charismatic leaders. All these features sustain and regulate power and authority in the Movement. They require autonomous and conscious decision making and a kind of participation which reflects strong trust in democracy and is a lever for positive transformation.

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