Globalization


People around the globe are more connected to each other than ever before. Information and money flow more quickly than ever. Goods and services produced in one part of the world are increasingly available in all parts of the world. International travel is more frequent. International communication is commonplace. This phenomenon has been titled "globalization."


Globalization: a process of increasing economic, intellectual, environmental and cultural intercourse between everyone and everything on the planet. The opposite of localization.


Globalization is a fact that follows from technological changes and increasing populations.


Globalization has economic, political and cultural dimensions, all of which can have a social impact. It has been driven by the increasing liberalization of international trade and foreign direct investment, and by freer capital flows. The process manifests itself mainly through an intensification of activities in the following areas:



o international trade in goods and services;
o capital flows (FDI and short-term flows);
o the role of multinational enterprises (MNE);
o the reorganization of production networks on an international scale;
o the adoption of new technology, including information technology.
Though the term globalization is widely used, its meaning is not always entirely clear and the report defines it as a process of rapid economic integration among countries driven by the liberalization of trade, investment and capital flows as well as rapid technological change. Globalization involves enterprises and workers of nearly all countries, in goods as well as services sectors. International trade and foreign direct investment flows have intensified and the information technology revolution has facilitated economic transactions. Short-term capital flows have grown spectacularly and, partly reflecting the integration of financial markets, transactions in foreign exchange markets are nearly 80 times larger than world trade. Globalization gives rise to concern on the part of developed countries which fear competition from low-wage economies, while firms from developing countries find it difficult to compete against powerful multinational companies from the "North".


While some people think of globalization as primarily a synonym for global business, it is much more than that. The same forces that allow businesses to operate as if national borders did not exist also allow social activists, labor organizers, journalists, academics, and many others to work on a global stage.


Although the general perception of globalization is that it is inevitable, it raises apprehension in developed and developing countries alike. The international media reflect the scepticism about the possible benefits of globalization. For developed countries the main concern is about the competition of cheaper imported goods from developing countries. Developing countries fear that they may be unable to compete with developed countries in a liberalized environment and that they may become marginalized in the international economy. Moreover, developing countries generally view globalization as requiring economic reforms that cause considerable hardship that may not necessarily be of a temporary nature.


The different dimensions of the process are interrelated and mutually reinforcing. Thus, international information flows that enable real-time transactions not only facilitate trade and investment, but also make it possible for enterprises to stay informed of international prices for the inputs they require in order to obtain similar price levels from their national providers. Although no trade may actually take place, there will be an impact on local enterprises. The international flow of "soft" technology -- knowledge of management practices and methods of work organization -- is another facet of globalization


"Globalization is not a phenomenon. It is not just some passing trend. Today it is an overarching international system shaping the domestic politics and foreign relations of virtually every country, and we need to understand it as such."


As thoughtful people concerned about world affairs, our job is to pick up "globalization," examine it from all sides, dissect it, figure out what makes it tick, and then nurture and promote the good parts and mitigate or slow down the bad parts.


Globalization is much like fire. Fire itself is neither good nor bad. Used properly, it can cook food, sterilize equipment, form iron, and heat our homes. Used carelessly, fire can destroy lives, towns and forests in an instant.


At a top political and economic level, globalization is the process of denationalization of markets, politics and legal systems, i.e., the rise of the so-called global economy. The consequences of this political and economic restructuring on local economies, human welfare