Globalization

The Origin of Globalization

Globalization refers to the increasing intensity of trade and other forms of relations between different countries and continents. Currently, people are living in a constantly changing environment that is becoming more interconnected. As such, the process refers to various forms of changes other than the increase in import and export businesses. It is essential that an individual establishes the origin of globalization in order to appreciate the term; however, the process is difficult due to several notions of when the process began (Rebt, 2008).

According to reputable sources, Columbus’ trip to the American continents (late 1400s) is established as the earliest momentous step in globalization. In addition, a trade route from Europe to Asia was initiated by Vasco de Gama at nearly the same period. This resulted in the creation of strong trade routes that opened up communication fronts between several countries and different continents.

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Over the centuries, globalization strengthened, and its speedy climb continued through the 18th century into the industrial revolution. The effect of globalization became so powerful that several weak countries started adopting ideas from the advanced nations (Rebt, 2008).

In the long run, the whole world went through the process of globalization, which is referred to as westernization. Westernization resulted in various advantages such as the development and use of steam powered locomotives for faster movements. These developments, therefore, enabled the faster movement of products and persons over lengthier distances than during the earlier times.

The constant sharing of ideas resulted in improved technology such as the internet, mobile communication, air travel, satellites and several others that have taken the world’s interconnectedness to another level (Rebt, 2008). As a result, these discoveries have created a platform for fast transfer of information and products; hence, enabling an effective worldwide association, outsourcing and immigration.

The Main Features of Globalization

One characteristic of globalization is the action that different individuals and organizations make investments in nations other than their local nations (Agrawala, 2010). The idea tells that there exists an unrestricted access within the global markets, and without physical, fiscal, or other limits set by the government.

As a result, global customers emerge searching for high-end products and value for their money without being exposed to any regional restrictions. In addition, large manufacturing plants search and purchase their raw materials from various parts of the world. Consequently, the resultant products are sold within the country of production or exported to all other parts of the world without bias.

Additionally, globalization needs various resources such as finance, technology, and raw materials in order to grow into another level. In that sense, globalization is characterized by the easy and cheap access to finance, latest technology, and quality raw materials. Also, the process of globalization involves the production of sub-assemblies of finalized goods within several country-branches, which are owned by the concerned organization (Agrawala, 2010).

This approach enables different individuals to collaborate and develop new products, as well as manufacturing processes. Moreover, the process results in the creation of job opportunities that are posted in several regions other than the host countries. For that reason, there is free movement of managerial personnel and business people that account for mergers, takeovers, and structural associations among several countries.

Furthermore, globalization is characterized by remarkably fast economic growth in numerous developing nations including China, India, and Vietnam (Agrawala, 2010). Therefore, there is the rapid creation of jobs in cheap labor markets, which is followed by an improved purchasing ability of the population, as well as resultant job opportunities.

Globalization is also characterized by a quick transformation at the industrial level of nations such as the United States, Britain and Germany, which were originally principal manufacturing nations. The process of globalization has effectively altered the economy of Detroit, Pittsburgh, and Dusseldorf as steel, and auto production employment opportunities varnished into the developing countries such as China.

This is also the same with technical opportunities in computer software development, hardware production, as well as in computer service industries. In particular, the scenario results in long-term economic alterations and redistribution of the workforce to different regions of the globe with cheaper markets, and higher profits margins.

The Influences of Globalization on Culture

Apart from several benefit of globalization, there are several issues that are raised against the process such as its apparent impact on local culture (Tandon, 2004). According to several reputable sources, it is feared that the spread of globalization will eliminate local cultures by regrouping different societies all over the world.

Apart from the United States, several nations across the globe agree with the previously mentioned effect that globalization may have on local culture. Several people including the British, the Germans, and the French have issues tolerating the United States cultural penetration that globalization demands.

However, globalization has several benefits along the cultural platform such as the understanding of different lifestyles and unification of people.

As a result, the process would improve individuals’ relationships; thereby, reducing any conflicts that crop up from cultural misunderstanding. In addition, an improved understanding of different cultures may boost an individual’s confidence and pride in their original culture and heritage; consequently, allowing individuals to interrelate well and assume a greater level of mutual understanding (Pieterse, 2009).

In that manner, people will be exposed to diverse forms of life and thought, which will play a momentous task in increasing the worldwide awareness and appreciation of man’s unity from all perspectives. Unfortunately, it would be significantly difficult to realize such benefits with the exposure of only a single side. For that matter, it may be noted that cultural understanding is a two-way traffic just like everything else.

Globalization allows for the realization of an improved level of individualism since individuals will be rated based on advantage and achievement (Pieterse, 2009). In countries such as Japan, the process has already taken effect since group achievement overtook individual performance.

This resulted because of the intense competition Japan received from other successful multinational companies. At the moment, individual performance and accomplishment have replaced superiority as the single method for promotion and recognition.

In addition, globalization improves the level of relations and adjustment among different civilizations (Tandon, 2004). Since people learn and develop through constant relations, different societies and cultures will be improved through effective interaction, observation and mutual sharing of ideas. For example, the Japanese culture was improved in several ways due to constant relations with the Chinese people.

Therefore, globalization allows for the establishment of a plural society such as the monolithic state structure, which is commonly used among several developing nations (Pieterse, 2009). An improved level of economic activity in these nations will generate several institutions, interest groups, and civil society that will promote the interests of their respective constituencies; thus, create a pluralistic society (Tandon, 2004).

Negative consequences of globalization

Globalization and health

Globalization has played an immense role in the spread of the world’s deadliest diseases form one country to another. In Asia, for instance, one-third of Europe’s population succumbed to the Black Death disease that occurred in the 14th century (Wikipedia, 2012). While modern forms of transportation enable several people and products move around the world, they also expose the airways to transcontinental transfer of deadly infectious diseases.

HIV/AIDS, for instance, is one such infection that has spread across the world and rated among the world’s leading epidemics. As such, globalization poses a significant danger to the lives of people globally, as much as it is essential and valuable for successful relations.

Increase in Corruption

The increasing level of corruption among different nations of the world has been tremendously influenced by the rapid spread in globalization. In particular, the highest level of corruption has been associated with countries on the African continent where leaders are involved in massive corruption deeds.

A study conducted in Uganda (a country in East Africa) revealed that only 27 cents of each dollar donated for educational functions reached the institutions within the country (Knowledge, 2011). However, the level of corruption in any country depends on the values, norms, cultural practices, and beliefs of such a nation.

While globalization allows the immigration of people from one region to another, there are increased levels of interaction and sharing of negative values from the affected people. As such, the population may absorb such values and start practicing the vices in order to secure the most for their selfish purposes.

Increase in Drugs and illicit goods trade

Over several years, globalization has played a key role in increasing the incidences of drugs and trade of illegal goods around the globe. In 2010, for instance, the UN office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) reported that worldwide trade in drugs generates more than $320 billion in government revenues with above 50 million frequent consumers of heroin, cocaine, and several synthetic drugs (Wikipedia, 2012).

This is made possible due to the effects of globalization that allows for a fast and secretive execution of drug deals by established drug lords. On the other hand, the use of parts from endangered species for traditional rituals resulted in a black market where poachers hunt for such animals because of the high returns. These trades have existed for long durations, but the rapid spread of globalization increases the gravity of the situation.

Brain drain

In some poor countries, globalization has caused severe brain drain as skilled workers from such countries search for high-paying jobs, which are offered by rich countries. For instance, nurses from some developing nations leave their countries to search for better paying job opportunities that those offered within their local countries.

In Africa, the scenario costs more than $4.1 billion as the continent secures 150,000 expatriates, on a yearly basis, as a compensation for the loss of its nurses: While India loses $10 billion on a yearly basis (Wikipedia, 2012). In conclusion, globalization favors the rich and developed nations because the most qualified individuals are absorbed by such economies.

References

Agrawala, K. (2010). Social Sciences: What are the Features of Present day Globalization? Retrieved March 6, 2012, from http://www.enotes.com/soc/discuss/what-features-present-day-globalization-84293

Knowledge, Y. (2011). Negative Effects of Globalization: Corruption. Retrieved March 7, 2012, from http://yourknowledge.hubpages.com/hub/Negative-Effects-of-Globalization-Corruption

Pieterse, J. (2009). Globalization and Culture. Plymouth, United Kingdom: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.

Rebt, L. (2008). The Origins of Globalization: Where did it start? Retrieved March 6, 2012, from http://voices.yahoo.com/the-origins-globalization-2353045.html?cat=9

Tandon, S. (2004). Globalization and Culture. Retrieved March 6, 2012, from http://www.satishtandon.com/globalculture.html

Wikipedia: Globalization. (2012). Retrieved March 6, 2012 from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Globalization

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