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A learning process whereby the components or subsystems of a system acquire a metasystem that represents the requirements, controls, goals, values and purposes of that system and thereby relieve that system of some of its original regulatory (see regulation) and control burdens. E.g., the acquisition of values, norms and a conscience provides individuals with criteria for decision making within a social system whose use is more efficient than if such determinations would have to be made repeatedly and in large numbers by legal or governmental procedures of the larger system. Through internalization a social system decentralizes regulation and control by providing its members with suitable constructs of their environment including themselves. (Krippendorff)
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