Monday, 15 February 2016

De-facto and De-jure Authority

The word ‘authority’ is derived from the Latin word ‘auctoritas’ which means the right to exercise power given by the State (in the form of government, judges, police officers, etc.). Authority is the power or admitted right to command or act. Authority is the power to do something. Authority means the institutionalized exercise of legitimate power which is backed by law or constitution and common consent.

Weber defines ‘authority’ as a legitimate form of domination, that is, forms of domination which followers or subordinates consider to be legitimate.

The dictionary meaning of the word ‘authority’ is the power to determine, adjudicate, or otherwise settle issues or disputes; jurisdiction; the right to control, command, or determine.

Authority can be original or delegated. It can be de facto authority or it can be de jure authority too.
De facto is a Latin expression that means "in fact, in reality, in actual existence, force, or possession, as a matter of fact". De jure is an expression that means "of right, by right, according to law"

The ability to get one’s proposals, commands, and pronouncements accepted and thus determine other people’s behaviour is to have authority de facto, whereas to have the right to make pronouncements, issue commands of certain kinds and get others to obey them is to have authority de jure.
So, the difference between the two is mainly with the way the word ‘authority’ is used. De jure authority can be viewed as a set of rules whereby certain people are authorized to do some things but not others. De jure stresses that the extent of authority depends not on whether he can authorize others to act but on what actions are open to him/her within the rules. De facto authority exists whenever a human recognizes another as entitled to command him. To have de facto authority is to stand out as having a certain relation to other people; that one can make them do what they command, because they are "convinced" to do so. The relationship of de facto authority arises from de jure, whereby some principles of legitimacy gives a ruler the right to command.

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