Introducing Globalization: Ties, Tensions, and Uneven Integration

Introducing Globalization: Ties, Tensions, and Uneven Integration

Matthew Sparke

Language: English

Pages: 508

ISBN: 0631231293

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Designed specifically for introductory globalization courses, Introducing Globalization helps students to develop informed opinions about globalization, inviting them to become participants rather than just passive learners.

  • Identifies and explores the major economic, political and social ties that comprise contemporary global interdependency
  • Examines a broad sweep of topics, from the rise of transnational corporations and global commodity chains, to global health challenges and policies, to issues of worker solidarity and global labor markets, through to emerging forms of global mobility by both business elites and their critics
  • Written by an award-winning teacher, and enhanced throughout by numerous empirical examples, maps, tables, an extended bibliography, glossary of key terms, and suggestions for further reading and student research
  • Supported by additional web resources – available upon publication at – including hot links to news reports, examples of globalization and other illustrative sites, and archived examples of student projects

Engage with fellow readers of Introducing Globalization on the book's Facebook page at, or learn more about this topic by enrolling in the free Coursera course Globalization and You at

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power of discourse about globalization is considerable. This accounts for much of the interest and buzz about the term. But it also makes it vital to explore the relationship between myths about globalization and what is really happening in the world at large. Introducing Globalization: Ties, Tensions, and Uneven Integration, First Edition. Matthew Sparke. © 2013 Matthew Sparke. Published 2013 by Blackwell Publishing Ltd. 28 Discourse 2.1  Globalization as Dominant Discourse The buzzword

transnational trade, it seems that the TNC term is more appropriate. The classic MNC model still survives, but it is increasingly being transformed by the new models of commodity chain that incorporate more horizontal, market-mediated integration strategies. These definitional nuances are worth noting simply as a way of better understanding the varying terms used in different books and articles. In addition, though, they also underline how the relationships between TNCs and globalization are more

already tells us a great deal about why they transnationalize. If a TNC set up foreign activities before the twentieth century, it most likely did so as a trading company or as a producer of raw materials. If it established foreign activities in the middle of the twentieth ­century, it most likely did so to gain access to foreign markets that were closed off behind tariff walls or too costly to reach from abroad. And if a TNC set up or ­coordinated foreign activities more recently it is more

finding a highly educated or linguistically talented workforce, or of locating a factory in an area where supply firms are already well established and where technical support is strong. More ­generally, TNCs seeking cost advantages in foreign operations are also frequently looking for an “efficient,” which is to say business-friendly, political regime with low taxes and minimally intrusive corporate regulations, or, if there are taxes and ­regulations, at least an efficient supply of useful

world, six are now less prosperous than they were 20 years ago. And this is to say nothing here of the increasing costs and human suffering caused by all the volatility created by liberalized financial markets, including most notably the steep reversal of world GDP growth following the crisis that started in 2008. Despite its poor predictive performance, we should not underestimate the theory of the international division of labor based on comparative advantage. Indeed, its failure as a

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