globalization

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globalization

Operating around the world. Although many large companies have globalized for decades, the Web, more than any other phenomenon, has enabled the smallest company to have a global presence. See localization.

globalization

A mulifaceted process in which the world is becoming more and more interconnected and communication is becoming instanteneous. Aspects of this process include:
  1. the transformation of the spatial arrangement and organization of social relations involving ‘action at a distance’, a stretching of social relations and transactions (and power), including instantaneous communications across time-space;
  2. the increasing extensity, intensity, velocity and impact of global social relations and transactions (see Held et al. 1999);
  3. the creation of new networks and nodes – the ‘network society’ (CASTELLS) – associated with the new levels of dependence on knowledge/ information and ‘expert systems – the ‘information’ or ‘knowledge society’ – as well as the new risks associated with this – RISK SOCIETY;
  4. a dialect between the global and the local in which (consistent with a dialect of power and the duality of structure) the outcome is not a simple triumph of the centre over the periphery, mere Americanization’, or suchlike (see also MCDONALDIZATION).

As Held et al. (1999) suggest, a ‘vibrant’ ongoing debate exists on the characterization of globalization between three groups of theorists:

  1. ‘hyperglobalizers’ (e.g. Ohmae 1990; 1995) for whom global marketization is the main driver;
  2. 'S ceptics’ (notably Hirst and Thompson 1996a and b), who play down the level and distinctiveness of the change;
  3. ‘transformationalists’, including GIDDENS, for whom globalization is a distinctive new phase such that societies and states across the globe are experiencing profound social as well as economic changes – a ‘massive shake-out’ of social relations, economies, governance and politics – as they seek to adapt to an increasingly interconnected but also unpredictable and uncertain world.
References in periodicals archive ?
Fass, "Children and Globalization," Journal of Social History (Summer 2003), 963-977 for an explanation of why I believe the United States provides a good basis for exploring issues of globalization in many parts of the world today.
But good policy is needed to ensure that globalization produces wider and sustained benefits for larger numbers of people, while fewer see it as a threat.
No, globalization did not come written in stone from Mount Sinai with Moses.
The current system of corporate-led globalization is not inevitable like the moon's pull on the tides, despite public relations efforts to create that impression on the part of those who benefit from this model.
While trade is both inevitable and can be very beneficial for producers and consumers, there is nothing preordained about setting one size-fits-all policy requirements on an array of domestic policy issues unrelated to trade but at the core of the corporate globalization agenda of privatization, deregulation, harmonization, and new property protections.
Where GATT was limited to trade in goods and based on objective principles like most-favored nation status, the WTO, the North American Free Trade Agreement and other instruments of corporate globalization require countries to transform their domestic policies to adopt uniform policies on who can own services operating within the country and how they can be regulated; on intellectual property, investment, food safety and inspection, environmental standards, and more.
Given the failure of this anti-democratic model to raise global standards of living (if you eliminate China, which has been largely outside this system operating in contravention to many of its tenets from the calculation, the percentage of people living on $1 per day has increased in the era of corporate globalization), reduce poverty, or promote growth, the corporate-led globalization model can and should be discarded in favor of a system that works--one that does not create a race to the bottom in standards of living, promote hunger and turmoil by mining millions of small farmers' livelihoods, and increase income in equality within and between nations.
We are for internationalism--where different cultures, countries and people trade and exchange goods and ideas and work together towards common goals--not for corporate economic globalization which imposes a one size-fits all model of economic and social policy worldwide.
So globalization of one sort or another is indeed inevitable (and always has been), but the jury is still out on what globalization actually means for much of the world.
Globalization cannot be restricted to homogenization.
The current phase of globalization is highlighted by three principal characteristics: the reduction in the time required to travel between countries, a declining association between cultural differences and geographic region--one need no longer travel to experience Cantonese cuisine or to live according to Confucian perspectives--and the intermeshing of the markets for goods, services including financial services, and labor across national boundaries.
Economic globalization has accelerated this process.