Globalisation and internationalism have been positive forces in creating a better world
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As the world progresses as does the processes of Globalisation and Internationalism. Throughout the years of these processes there has been much change in the world ranging numerous areas, although predominately: trade, the environment, human rights, technology and communications and politics. The world has developed and become much more communal, much more international. This can be attributed to Globalisation and internationalism. These two ideas have changed the world certainly for the good; however good is not all that comes from these mechanisms.
When you think of Globalisation the first thing that comes to mind in most occasions, is economics. International trade has experience enormous growth over the years and is still continuing. The strongest embodiment of Globalisation and its impact of international trade is the development of multinational corporations, being a company which engages in foreign direct investment and operates out of multiple countries. Of the largest 100 economies in the world, 51 are corporations. These corporations wield enormous power as their operations can contribute largely to a nation’s economy.
Take for example Mitsubishi in Adelaide, Australia. When their production line closed recently many jobs were lost. However the impact is greater than just those working in the factories, there are also many who supplied parts to the factory who now suffer from depleted funds. All of this has a negative impact on Australia’s wealth which directly challenges our sovereignty when we need the finances of a corporation. The world is seen as a single global market these days. Free trade is growing exponentially as are reductions in local industry protectionism such as subsidies and tariffs.
Of course international trade has greatly benefited Asian nations who supply cheap products however debate continues over who truly benefits from international trade. Ultimately however this free trade does garnish us with cheaper goods which are beneficial to us, the consumer. It raises our standard of living, so in this regard at least; Globalisation has been a positive force in creating a better world This producing of goods and greater development cannot occur without a by-product. In recent years more than ever people are becoming more concerned with the environment, and the detrimental impact we are having upon it.
As previously mentioned Globalisation increases our standard of living and this leads of greater consumption. Greater consumption however produces greater emissions and use of our land to produce the products which we desire. Multinational corporations produce large amounts of goods which contribute to the phenomenon of global warming. Pollution plays a major part in the negative impact on the environment and these can often be accredited to multinationals. Over-exploitation of resources such as overfishing and deforestation, such as the Amazon which is logged extensively for economic gains, has negative connotations for the environment.
So while Globalisation may cause harm to environments, Internationalism often helps combat it. Arguably the principal of internationalism is that we all share a social responsibility to others on the world and should work towards the greater good, over that of the individual states. Bodies such as the UN, the embodiment of Internationalism, work to ensure environmental sustainability (one of the Millennium Development Goals. ) However it must be said that this would not be possible if not for the enhancements in communications which came with Globalisation.
Another issue coming out of Globalisation and Internationalism is that of human rights and refuges. It is difficult to ascertain if the overall reduction in global wars is due to globalisation and internationalism however it is hard not to acknowledge the part that Internationalism must have played through the body of the UN. Many nations have been formed in the belief in the inherent rights of their state. The idea that these should be protected on an international level is recent, corresponding with the UN’s establishment.
It is becoming more widely accepted that human rights apply everywhere, to all human beings by virtue of their humanity regardless of the legality in their host country. There are record numbers of people seeking to relocate but nations are hesitant to accept large numbers of refugees and asylum seekers. Australia has been criticized for their position on mandatory detention however our policies are dwarfed by the immigration policies of Japan. All this comes back to the issue of people trafficking, which poses a major problem for human rights.
Under the doctrine of Internationalism there should be no borders between nations, we should be able to come and go as we please. This is however in practice, not a reality. Numbers of people being granted asylum in the world is on the rise overall so internationalism is slowly working. The Millennium Development Goals of the UN are linked to human rights as their primarily work towards universal health, education and a standard of living. Human rights standards are on the rise universally and this has to be accredited to Internationalism, which is being a positive force in creating a better world.
Technological developments and developments in communications have taken some of the greatest leaps of any kind over the last 50 years. The internet is primary to globalisation. Technology makes our lives easier and we enjoy having access to it but there is an obvious digital divide. The benefits of globalisation, while strong are not shared by all. Only 5% of the world has access to the internet, an astonishing figure considering the global nature of it. Of great significance to internationalism working is politics. More and more we see intergovernmental and transnational agencies such as ASEAN becoming more frequent and more influential.
International standards are being set and it is harder for states to treat citizens too far outside these standards without international pressure. In some cases sanctions can be imposed such as in Iraq in 1991. Globalisation has enabled widespread global protests to occur through technological gains, often ironically targeting an issue which is a by-product of globalisation itself. Widespread corruption if African nations make the tasks of internationalism difficult as cause their nations to lag behind in development. This is especially prevalent in the upholding of the MDG’s.
Internationalism encourages the removal of trade barriers and this leaves a country more susceptible to global markets. With all these issues, politically, Internationalism is a challenge to a nation itself with the challenges to sovereignty only getting stronger. The world has changed, both for the good, and the bad. The effects of Globalisation and internationalism effect our day to day lives in more ways than many people comprehend. Ultimately the forces of globalisation and internationalism work to create a better world. There is a divide between those who benefit from the processes and those who do not, however this gap is reducing.
Developments in trade, the environment, human rights and refugees, technology and communications and politics can be traced back to Globalisation and Internationalism so in many ways they have played a positive role in creating a better world. While in some cases Globalisation can have negative impacts on us, Internationalism often helps to combat this through a global partnership. Ultimately however how much of the benefits you receive depend on where you live, as Internationalism’s ideologies will never be truly international.