1. It is dominated not by a single elite but rather by a multiplicity of relatively small groups, some of which are well organized and funded, some of which are not.
2. The groups are politically autonomous, or independent.
3. Inter-group competition leads to countervailing influence
4. It is open in two senses. Most organizations are seldom if ever completely shut off from the outside. The availability of unused resources constantly encourages the formation of new groups.