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What is Globalization?

Tricia Christensen
Updated May 23, 2024
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Globalization is a difficult term to define because it has come to mean so many things. In general, the term refers to the trend toward countries joining together economically, through education, society and politics, and viewing themselves not only through their national identity but also as part of the world as a whole. Globalization is said to bring people of all nations closer together, especially through a common medium like the economy or the Internet.

In our world, there are few places a person can’t get to within a day of travel, and few people a person can’t reach via telephone or Internet. Because of modern modes of travel and communication, citizens of a nation are more conscious of the world at large and may be influenced by other cultures in a variety of ways. Time and space matter less, and even language barriers are being overcome as people all over the world communicate through trade, social Internet forums, various media sources, and a variety of other ways.

Arguments for globalization include the following:

  • It is reducing poverty worldwide.
  • It is allowing access to technology in developing countries.
  • It promotes world peace.
  • It has benefited women and children’s rights.
  • It raises life expectancy.

Arguments against the process are more likely to come from people or nations who wish to resist trends in the global society. For instance, a fundamentalist Islamic country may resist it because they see it as equivalent to westernization—weakening the religious strength of a country and exposing its people to corrupting ideas. Similarly, globalization may be feared or a matter of a concern to any country with strong isolationist policies. In the US, much of the arguments for resisting the process come from conservative groups.

Some people worry about how certain trends, such as outsourcing, might affect the nation. Concern exists that while outsourcing might benefit a nation which gets jobs, this takes jobs from the country or company that outsources. In this way, though the economy of the world is more globalized, the economy of an individual nation might suffer.

Even though globalization may be a subject of argument, it’s highly unlikely to end any time soon. It would take mass destruction of all modern methods of communication and transport, in addition to all countries taking strong isolationist policies in order to reverse the trends in the world. This doesn’t mean that some nations or people won’t resist what they view as globalization, but you could compare this trend to a runaway train. At this point, there is little to do to stop the communication of minds all over the world through vehicles like the Internet. Even teens and kids are communicating with children from “the four corners” of the globe. It’s therefore unlikely that globalization will experience a downward trend, and will likely continue to influence our world in myriad ways.

CulturalWorld.org is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
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Tricia Christensen
By Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a CulturalWorld.org contributor, Tricia Christensen is based in Northern California and brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to her writing. Her wide-ranging interests include reading, writing, medicine, art, film, history, politics, ethics, and religion, all of which she incorporates into her informative articles. Tricia is currently working on her first novel.
Discussion Comments
By anon1003014 — On Apr 17, 2020

How does globalization affect business in transportation?

By anon933648 — On Feb 17, 2014

What are the common concepts of art in globalization? give examples, please.

By jessiwan — On Jan 13, 2014

@post 39: Why do you think that there are no nations which can be self-sufficient? Off the top of my head I can think of one, and that is the US. They've got a large land-mass so they should be able to grow enough crops and food to sustain their population. Seems pretty self-sufficient to me. They want to trade, or rather I should say, her people are brainwashed into believing that their nation would suffer if they did not participate in international trade.

Globalization just means more non-white immigrants dumped into a Western nation and jobs being outsourced to the poorer countries, thereby decreasing the degree of affluence in the richer, first-world countries. Sounds like a bad deal for the First world nations.

Can someone please tell me why globalization is a good thing? If globalization truly was such a god-send, why did we have borders at all? And since we do have borders, that means deep down we want to keep our own respective nations separate from other nations. And in my opinion, having borders is a good thing. It keeps the people of a particular nation uniform in terms of culture, language, and even genetic make-up. It preserves cultural identity, promotes patriotism, and keeps a people unique. Globalization will erase all this.

By anon321343 — On Feb 22, 2013

@Post 29: I do not think countries have a choice as to whether they would want globalization in their country or not, because the drivers of a global phenomena of this magnitude and intensity occur in the form of social change taking place gradually, overriding individual choice in this capitalistic global economic system. It rests on the fact that there is no state that is self-sufficient and this situation of interdependence between states therefore heightens the process of globalization.

By anon291046 — On Sep 12, 2012

How do ideas about globalization shape our understanding of the trend?

By anon268213 — On May 13, 2012

What are six contributors to globalisation?

By anon254044 — On Mar 12, 2012

What are the reasons not to travel since there is globalisation?

By bamdevsubedi — On Feb 17, 2012

How does globalization affect public health in the developing countries?

By anon247510 — On Feb 14, 2012

What are the implications of globalization on public health?

By anon155288 — On Feb 23, 2011

Which countries are against globalization?

By anon151455 — On Feb 10, 2011

To anyone interested in researching globalization, I would recommend you read The Lexus and the Olive Tree: Understanding Globalization by Thomas L. Friedmen. It's a bit dated now, but its a very interesting read.

By anon148181 — On Jan 31, 2011

Why is globalization important and why do some people want it in the world? I think it is important but I want to know others' opinions.

By anon143087 — On Jan 15, 2011

what are the challenges face by teenagers in a globalized world?

By anon103200 — On Aug 11, 2010

what is the need of globalization?

By anon103199 — On Aug 11, 2010

actually, poverty is increased because of globalisation and people in third world nations are taken advantage of because TNCs wish to maximize profits.

By anon87822 — On Jun 01, 2010

What causes globalization?

By anon86805 — On May 26, 2010

When did globalisation start and how did it start?

By anon82227 — On May 05, 2010

What are the implications of globalization on the IHRM?

By anon74947 — On Apr 04, 2010

how does globalization affect one geographically?

By anon70986 — On Mar 16, 2010

how does globalization affect education?

By Karantulaa — On Feb 19, 2010

Questions are good but it would be nice, especially (I think) for Ganagdhar, to have some of them answered.

By anon61807 — On Jan 22, 2010

How does globalization affect the Caribbean?

By anon45010 — On Sep 12, 2009

How does globalization affect trade, agriculture and industry?

By anon42969 — On Aug 24, 2009

how does globalization affect environment in terms of managing an organization?

By anon39681 — On Aug 03, 2009

how does globalization affect managerial accounting?

By anon37306 — On Jul 18, 2009

How does globalization destroy communication and transport?

By anon34368 — On Jun 21, 2009

How does globalization affect online banking?

By chanti — On Feb 05, 2009

this is ganagdhar,i am doing research on the globalization.

1.how does globalization destruct the communication and transport?

2.you are talking about the isolation techniques for a country. Will you please explain to me how this isolation will help a nation against globalization.

By anon25301 — On Jan 27, 2009

What are the implications of globalization on the IHRM ???

By hammad999 — On Feb 29, 2008

What are the implications of globalization on the IHRM ???

Tricia Christensen
Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a CulturalWorld.org contributor, Tricia...
Learn more
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