An Overview of Key Terms and Definitions of Globalization
Globalization is a form of cultural integration that is usually defined in terms of economics, but also encompasses cultural, biological, and political homogenization on a global scale. The term is often used to describe the process by which dominant cultures exert social, political, and economic influence on other nations and cultures.
The globalization debate has its origins in the first contact between ancient societies.
Economic globalization began when cultures with their own economic systems began to exchange resources or attempt military conquest of other cultures.
Many social scientists adopt a neutral stance on globalization, while attempting to elucidate both the benefits and detriments of current and historical trends. Within the larger public debate, there are those who believe that globalization will eventually lead to a utopian world society, while others believe that globalization will cause the obliteration of less-dominant cultures in favor of more economically developed cultures.
Throughout history, governments have been viewed as the principal agents of globalization; in recent years, multinational corporations have become a more important force in economic and environmental globalization. Many of these companies have reached to global markets as sources of new revenue.
Capitalism: An economic system in which the means of production are privately or publicly owned. Goods, services and capital are exchanged in a free market.
Developing Countries: Those countries classified by the World Bank as "intermediate" and "low" income nations. The distinction is made on the basis of the country's Gross National Income (GNI).
E-Commerce: Electronic commerce usually refers to economic transactions that take place electronically, including Internet-based transactions and direct electronic connections between businesses.
Homogenization: To make something uniform or similar by blending elements.
International Monetary Fund (IMF): An international organization of 183 countries, established in 1947 with the goal of promoting cooperation and exchange between nations, and to aid the growth of international trade.
Mercantilism: An economic theory that holds that a nation's prosperity is based on the nation's supply of capital. Mercantilism is generally associated with nations whose major mode of accumulating wealth is through merchant trading with other nations.
Multilateral: A system involving the participation of more than two countries.
Multinational Corporation: A corporation that conducts business in more than one nation.
Offshoring: Transferring organizational functions to another country.
Outsourcing: Transferring non-central functions to another entity to complete. This could be done in the same country such as when a company outsources its shipping function to a major shipper. It can also be done offshore for cost benefits.
Protectionism: Measures set up by a governing organization to protect domestic industry and economy from foreign competition. Protectionism includes import and export regulations and government support for domestic production.
World Bank: A union of international organizations established in 1945 to provide aid to countries seeking to participate in international exchange, and to reduce poverty around the world. Its member organizations are the International Development Association, International Center for the Settlement of Investment Disputes, International Finance Corporation, International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, and the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency.