The topic of Globalisation has been floating around me the last few years, and is almost becoming a bad smell from the sounds of my peers when the word is dropped.
It’s not a straightforward concept to begin with.
Globalisation is the connections between countries and people. It’s the nexus of global trade in commodities, social ideas, cultures and geopolitics. It connects us as local citizens of our city or country to the rest of the world.
Globalisation is making the world smaller and bringing ideas and cultures across boarders.
An example was raised in the discussion that describes one aspect of globalisation; The car industry. Cars in Australia were either imported from America or simply assembled here by immigrant labor (another aspect of globalisation in itself) Australia then began manufacturing the Holden FX. Now there are cars imported from America, Europe and Asia. This is all because of globalisation, specifically expanding local markets to a global community. But in this example, it doesn’t end there. European cars are more expensive to service and replacing parts from a BMW is more expensive than parts for a Honda. This reflects the difference in laboring and transport costs.
Similarly, the transnational company, Nike has been spread around the world and has one of the highest brand recognition.
Recognized around the world, Nike is the biggest producer of sport apparel. Globalisation has spread Nike products all over the globe. Nike operates as if the world is just one market. Bega cheese comes from Bega. Nike simple exists internationally. It’s associated with the biggest athletes and teams from multiple countries. However, Nike didn’t to where it is without help. Because of gobalisation, Nike outsources it’s production to poorer countries, using incredibly cheap labor using workers who are paid 20 cents p/hour. This is a darker reality to globalisation. Because of the global contentedness, Nike is able to exploit people to progress their own ends.
The discussion in class evolved into a more personal experience as we were asked how globalisation affects us as Australians. Vegemite™ was mentioned and the true Aussies were outraged that it had been sold to overseas companies. Being opposition and argumentitive, I took the other side simply for the benefit of the debate.
Our cultures are merging, which is especially apparent in Australia. Societies are sharing customs with one another and physical differences in race and culture is now bridged with ideological similarities.
Not that cultural identity and icons aren’t important, but that we shouldn’t fear the new ideas, cultures and customs that come with globalisation. We are humans of one earth and should be united as a species. Globalisation is helping this unification and bringing the local to the global; ‘Glocal’
So don’t fear the interconnection, just be aware.