The Law Dictionary

Your Free Online Legal Dictionary • Featuring Black’s Law Dictionary, 2nd Ed.

EMERGENT Definition & Legal Meaning

Definition & Citations:

One or more unanticipated characteristics or properties that show only when the entire system or process is engaged and working. The emergence is meaningful only at the level of the whole system, process, or person. It is not merely the sum of the characteristics or properties of its components or parts. It cannot be anticipated from knowledge of the components and parts. Understanding it requires knowledge of the ‘whole’ system.. Examples are the wetness of water, a person’s character or personality, a particular strength or weakness of an economy or society.


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