Archives for June 2013

The “Globalization” of Globalization

Statistics, as well as good record-keeping, can provide invaluable insights.

In the fourteen months since this website was launched, we have had over 14,000 visits, literally from all over the world. Naturally, the great majority of our website’s visitors come from major cities and nations capitals, mainly from the US and Canada, most countries in Europe (not only English speaking locations), developed Asia, China, India, Russia, Australia and New Zealand.

globalization

Today we will share with you some very interesting and unusual non-English-speaking places of visitors to our website. This list has been compiled from visits during the recent weeks:

 

  1. Kathmandu, Nepal

  2. Phnom Penh, Cambodia

  3. Port-au-prince, Haiti

  4. Lomé,Togo

  5. Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

  6. Tehran, Iran

  7. Cairo, and Alexandria, Egypt

  8. Aleppo, Syria

  9. Amman, Jordania

  10. Muscat, Oman

  11. Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

  12. Ashgabat, Turkmenistan

  13. Timisoara, Iasi, and Bucharest, Romania

  14. Chisinau, Moldova

  15. Tirana, Albania

  16. Tallinn, Estonia

  17. Riga, Latvia

  18. Vilnius, LIthuania

  19. Zagreb, Croatia

  20. Slovenj Gradec, Slovenia

  21. Lvov, Kiev, and Kiselëv, Ukraine

  22. Sofia, Bulgaria

  23. Thessaloniki, Greece

  24. Istanbul, and Ankara, Turkey

  25. Hanoi, Vietnam

  26. Pantai, Butterworth Penang, Batu Caves, and Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

  27. Nonthaburi,Thailand

  28. Bandung, and Jakarta, Indonesia

  29. Wonju, South Korea

  30. Cotai, Macau

  31. Caracas, Venezuela

  32. Paysandú, Montevideo, Uruguay

  33. Valdivia, Chile

  34. Acassuso, Argentina

  35. Ezequiel Montes, Saltillo, Querétaro, Culiacán, and Mexicali, Mexico

  36. Chapecó, Fortaleza, and Campinas, Brazil

  37. Porto, Portugal

  38. Castelldefels, Spain

  39. Dubna, and Belgorod, Russia

  40. Haifa, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel

  41. Sarpsborg, Stavanger, and Trondheim, Norway

globalization

A second list of eighteen English speaking jurisdictions, yet with very low population and/or very poor nations, round up this most interesting analysis:

  1. Saint-Denis, Port Louis, Mauritius

  2. Valletta, Malta

  3. Suva, Fiji

  4. Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea

  5. Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei

  6. Kingstown, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

  7. Valsayn, San Fernando, Port of Spain, Trinidad & Tobago

  8. Paramaribo, Suriname

  9. Castries, Saint Lucia

  10. Dehiwala, and Colombo, Sri Lanka

  11. Dhaka, Bangladesh

  12. Cebu City, Makati, Quezon City, Sucat, and Davao, Philippines

  13. Faisalabad, and Lahore, Pakistan

  14. Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania

  15. Gweru, Zimbabwe

  16. Douala, Cameroon

  17. Port Harcourt, Lagos, Nigeria

  18. Nairobi, Kenya

The information provided only refers to visits from those places, not about the nationality of the visitor who, in turn, might be a person on a business and/or vacation trip, on a temporary stay, or a relocated corporate officer of a multinational -or diplomat- for a long stay. Still, some of the visitors from unusual places must be local citizens of the country where the digital visits are originated, a true mosaic of geographic diversity across the whole planet.

All in all, the speed and extent at which the world geography is covered in a topic as globalization is truly astonishing; the universality of interest in the globalization topic, from the geographical perspective, is utterly evident; that is our experience. An unquestionable testimony on the strong interest in the dynamic, increasingly complex, yet fascinating world around us.

 

Globalization: Controversial?

“It has been said that arguing against globalization is like arguing against the laws of gravity”. 

––Kofi Annan, former UN Secretary-General.

globalization controversialIt is impossible to understand where something is headed, without first understanding where it comes from. So the first question is: What is globalization? Read about it here.

Globalization has six very important attributes (as stated in What is Globalization?):

  • It is permanent and irreversible. Given its profound roots in human nature.
  • It is omnipresent. There isn’t an instance or place untouched by globalization.
  • It is multidisciplinary. It needs to be analyzed from multiple perspectives, in a holistic way.
  • It is not optional. The choice is not in whether we embrace it or not. It is in how we embrace it.
  • It cannot be controlled. Nobody controls the process of globalization for an extended period of time, regardless of the size and influence they may have, since globalisation is the collective interaction of individuals, organizations, and nations evolving through time.
  • It is meritocratic. The natural selection process is highly applicable to the way globalization works (survival of the fittest).

Yet, globalization means a lot of different things to different people.

When dealing with globalization, like in all human endeavors, if common foundations and premises aren’t shared, a proper analysis is virtually impossible.

In fact, that was the major idea behind writing the book GLOBALIZATION: Opportunities and Implications, to define and document the major premises of globalization. It is an attempt to unify the basic context for further analysis.

What are the major foundations and premises that have to be shared for a meaningful analysis or debate? In other words, what are the desirable common denominators from where to take off?

There are several. Probably the most basic one is a proper use of metrics. Lord Kelvin very wisely stated “What is not measured cannot be improved”. Indeed, that is a fundamental truth.

country direction

So, the starting point should be to have an adequate grasp of who’s who in the world. That means to share a common knowledge of the major features and traits of most nations on Earth. For that purpose to be meaningful, it is necessary to have a balanced, objective, reasonably comprehensive overview of:

  • Each country’s size (population, geographical extension, GDP, total exports, and so on), the per capita figures are of a particular importance. because they provide sound metrics for comparisons among nations (and also for meaningful comparisons within nations themselves along time).

  • A balanced overview about each nation (and region) history and geopolitics.

The second indispensable element is to have a clear understanding of the cause/effect relationships concerning wealth and poverty. Wealth and poverty are clear effects of present and past causes. There are a handful of currently very wealthy nations that just a few decades ago (3 to 5) were among the poorest countries on earth (Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan) or among the poor ones (Czech Republic, Chile, Israel, New Zealand) and nowadays are already developed nations, some of them extremely wealthy, like Singapore.

China is in the midst of a profound transformation in that direction: although China is still a poor nation (per capita basis), the speed of economic growth of the past three decades has already catapulted it from the low tier among the poor to the middle range. If China is able to maintain a growth rate substantially higher than the rest of the world, as has been the case during the past three decades, the Chinese economic miracle will continue.

So, economic solvency is a result of how a society organizes its production of goods and services. The better organized a society is, the wealthier it becomes. A nation’s economic solvency only indirectly has to do with political ideology. It mostly has to do with management capabilities (or lack thereof), particularly in the political arena.

Once that common ground on globalization has been laid out and shared, relevant analysis (and debates) can take place.

The globalization phenomenon provides an unsurpassable opportunity to learn from the best managed nations on Earth, in benefit of the rest. Most fortunately, globalization has within itself the key to massively decrease world poverty, in a consistent, self-sustainable basis. Read about the Turbo-charged Global Project.

As previously stated, unmistakable cause/effect relationships are at work  behind the world’s best governed and prosperous nations; that is also the case behind the most undeveloped countries in the globe. Widespread poverty, along with its multiple most pernicious byproducts does not have to be the norm among most nations in the globe, as it already has been since the beginning of mankind.

In no way does this post pretend to suggest that globalization is not surrounded by controversy. Not at all! However, if the common ground previously referred to is set as a starting point, most of the subsequent analysis and debates will surely be more meaningful and fruitful.

In conclusion, probably more often than not, the globalization subject tends to be controversial for the wrong reasons. Ideally, many legitimate controversies should be on the table of discussion, but only once the fundamental common denominators have been established and shared. Otherwise, this fascinating subject can easily become a Tower of Babel, as has often been the case.

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