Globalization With the advent of the internet and massive computing systems that are nevertheless small in physical scale, the world is becoming an ever-shrinking globe. National boundaries are becoming blurred as people in India begin working for companies in the United States and cultural groups are beginning to lose their sense of uniqueness as the world’s civilizations become more and more Westernized with the onset of full-scale capitalism. This globalization, or inter-nationalization, process has been a hotly debated topic in the media, political and social circles for the past several years.
The International Monetary Fund defines globalisation as “a historical process” involving “the increasing integration of economies around the world, particularly through trade and financial flows” (International Monetary Staff, 2002). It is typically viewed as a necessary and unavoidable key to future world economic development.
Others have denounced the process as it seems to increase the current inequalities that exist within and between nations, threatens the employment and living standards of individuals in all countries as talent is pulled from each and low-paying jobs are farmed out to others and prevents the natural social progress with which each of these countries have been involved.
Although this process is unlikely to change and reversal seems impossible, considering the effects this process has on the individual as well as the nations and organizations involved, it is difficult not to agree in large part with the statement, “Whether we call it globalization or inter-nationalization, very few people, organizations or states stand to benefit as a result.” (International Monetary Staff, 2002).
Changes in the way in which organisations conduct business have been rapid and wide-spread as the globalisation concept has been introduced. It is the inherent nature of the marketplace to increase efficiency within the workplace by constantly striving to produce the most products with the least expenditure of resources.
It is this concept that has driven many corporations to join in the globalization process, frequently outsourcing many of their activities and production processes to less developed countries in which this process is less expensive and requires fewer restrictions, licensing, and/or controls. “Global markets offer greater opportunity for people to tap into more and larger markets around the world. It means that they can have access to more capital flows, technology, cheaper imports and larger export markets” (International Monetary Fund Staff 2002).
Although the idea of globalisation sounds like an ideal situation for the increased flow of goods and currencies throughout the world, as well as a possible solution for the redistribution of wealth into some of the world’s most destitute countries, “in practice, this has meant that the governments of the advanced capitalist countries, along with the I.M.F., the World Bank, and the W.T.O., have increasingly sought to force other nations to adopt market economies, privatize public companies and resources, abandon labor and environmental regulations, reduce social services, and embrace ‘free trade’ and the free movement of transnational capital” (Smith 2002).
It is noted that much of the globalization effort is being organized and encouraged by the Western capitalist countries and the big businesses that have ever-increasing power in the political circles, forcing their own ideals, agendas and policies upon developing nations desperate for some help. While the International Monetary Fund (2002) argues that “globalization offers extensive opportunities for truly worldwide development,” they also admit that the increased efficiency and division of labor does not necessarily benefit everyone involved.
With the ill effects of globalisation acutely felt in some areas of the world, it might be questioned as to why any organisation, nation or individual would consider encouraging its spread. However, it could be argued that globalisation has been in existence ever since the first two countries established communication with each other. The question is not how to stop globalisation, but rather how to make globalisation work in such a way that it does not break down the cultural ideals, family structures or provide corporations with unchecked controls over developing nations even while it works to benefit the world economy.
International Monetary Fund Staff. “Globalization: Threat or Opportunity.” International Monetary Fund. (January 2002). Retrieved 10 June, 2009 from Smith, David Michael. “The Growing Revolt Against Globalization.” Impact Press. (August / September 2002).