Space is the ocean amongst stars. It is such an easy analogy that the crafts that move around in space is called ships. It is also an idea that gave eve some of its most fundamental flaws.
The biggest complaint about Eve is the blob, and the ocean is simply a more blobby environment then on land. While armies often have to spread out and defend and fight along a wide front, navies often fought with entire national combat strengths and then some at one point of decision, and extremely "messed up" results have been shown like how the German high seas fleet blueballed the Royal Navy for the entire duration of WW1 after "winning" the battle of jutland with insufficient margin to stop Britain from building up her dreadnought blob to invincible levels. The entire history of kreigsmarine in ww2 is a illustrated example of how solo/small gang raiding just doesn't work, and even submarines work better in blobby wolfpacks.
The reason why the ocean is more blobby and a bad idea to build eve around is simple:
It is no slower, and sometimes faster, to move a large fleet then to move a small one across the ocean, and it means blobs have no weakness.
On land, natural choke points and logistics limit large forces to be a lot slower then bigger ones and it is as a result, far less blobby and skirmishing actually works. This principle applies strongly in wormholes and as a result, it is a far better environment for fairer battles.
Now, I'm by no means saying that there should be hard limits on fleet scales or anything. However, anything that makes it harder for larger forces to move faster then smaller ones is critical. Gates should impose traffic control if too many people try to jump in too short amounts of time, cyno should not allow infinite caps spawn in no time at all, and should require spool up, mass limits and a whole much of things. The basic rule that "bigger, more numerous, more power equals slower" must be build into all levels of design.
I believe this is a design principle that should be adopted far ahead of other tweaking of sov mechanics that just swaps around time zone coverage, peak fleet strength, fleet composition and defender's advantage as the decider of sov fights without addressing the fact that the blob is too good at catching and killing ships on top of everything else. If the blob kills ships the best, then it doesn`t matter what other mechanics is in place for small gangs since they'd die and thus fail at those other objectives.