Essay Topic: Globalization and its impact
In the not-so-distant past, cultures across the world began to embark on a quest for ‘new worlds’, hoping to find resources not readily available in their native lands. Thus began a phenomenon the world today calls globalization: an intermingling of people and trades on an international scale. The WHO describes globalization as “increased interconnectedness and interdependence of peoples and countries.” As such, globalization opens up international borders, facilitating the flow of goods, services, and other resources.
Impаct of Globаlizаtion
THE POSITIVE IMPACTS OF GLOBALIZATION
- BROADER CULTURAL HORIZONS
Needless to say, the loosening of borders has also facilitated the emigration of people across the globe, which in turn has led to an exchange and intermingling of cultures like never before. From food to fashion, globalization has brought about a sense of homogeneity. Western clothing is now more or less the norm in most countries, and cuisines of different cultures have found their way in plates across the globe. Entertainment from across the globe is now readily available thanks to streaming giants like Netflix and Amazon Prime.
- GREATER ECONOMIC PROSPECTS
Economic prospects have increased dramatically since the mid-to-late 20th century. In fact, this is one of the strongest factors behind immigration. With freer trades, companies have acquired multinational status, in turn opening their doors to foreign nationals. This mass emigration has, in turn, led to a greater interaction of cultures hitherto unforeseen.
- HIGHER INCOME
The more open a country is to international trade, the higher is its per capita income. According to recent estimates, the per capita income of a country increases by 3.3% following a 10% increase in the ratio of trade to GDP. IN fact, it is predicted that if all barriers to global free trade are removed, the resultant economic exchange would increase the global income by $1.9 trillion.
- BETTER QUALITY OF LIFE
Quality of life is very closely dependant on the per capita income of a country. As such, counties with more relaxed trade borders find their citizens enjoying a higher quality of life. From 1980 to 2000, two decades seeing globalization reach new heights- quality of life indicators such as poverty, carbon emissions, infant mortality, pollution, illiteracy, and life expectancy improved significantly in low-and-moderate growth nations.
- GREATER ACCESS TO EDUCATION
A contributing factor to this improvement is certainly the access to knowledge. With advancement in technology, especially the internet, the world has truly become our oyster. Universities across the world have opened up online course or a global student base, granting access to subjects that would otherwise require a significantly higher sum of money to pursue. This easy ace to education, on a national as well as international level, has opened up new career paths and opportunities for the global population.
- SHARING OF INFORMATION
In fact, in the age of globalization, knowledge is not just limited to educational degrees. With multiple channels broadcasting to a worldwide audience, one country’s news soon becomes global information. The death of George Floyd in the United States of America gained global press coverage and condemnation within hours of the incident. The farmers’ protests in India gained supporters across the world.
THE NEGATIVE IMPACTS OF GLOBALIZATION
- THE CONTAINMENT ISSUE
With all being said, we would be remiss to think that there is no downside to living in a global village. The negative of globalization had never been so succinctly and crushingly pointed out as the COVID-19 pandemic did: as people moved across borders, the virus did with them; what had begun in a small province in China spread like wildfire within months into the furthest reaches of the world, halting life as we know it indefinitely.
- CLIMATE CHANGE
Global warming and depletion of resources is yet another regrettable consequence of globalization. Export of abundantly available natural resources within a nation’s ecosystem is a great source of revenue, and multiple counties vie for these often invaluable resources, Take fossil fuels for example. By globally using up fossil fuels at an alarming rate, we have increasingly destabilized the earth’s ecosystem.
- LOSS OF LIVELIHOOD
Economy is not unhurt by globalization either. Just like the arrival of machines rendered a part of the workforce redundant, similarly, nations across the world face a shortage of working population. In countries with a higher growth rate, it is economically viable to set up operations in and invite foreign workforce from lesser-developed countries, thus leaving a vast percentage of the native population without a sustainable income. In turn, lesser developed nations find their working population leaving en masse for greener pastures.
The rate of globalization has seen a sharp increase since the late 1980s. People from across the world have mingled like never before, gaining new insights into different ways of life. And with an interconnected world have come global problems, requiring different nations to come together as one entity against a common enemy.