Acting essentially to maintain power and collect taxes, the emperors of the Byzantine Empire (ca. 950-1100) did not attempt to govern provincial society. As a result, provincial households took advantage of this situation by competing for local control over each other whenever they could. This book describes the power-holders in the central provinces in a detailed comparison of the provincial strength of the imperial government and the mechanics of local authority.
Neville, L., and L. Neville. Authority in Byzantine Provincial Society, 950–1100. Cambridge University Press, 2004.