Terrorism and the International Business Environment

Terrorism and the International Business Environment

The Security–Business Nexus

Edited by Gabriele G.S. Suder

This book was born from the editor’s conviction that a wide set of contributors should provide the economic and corporate sectors with guidelines, developed from rigorous research and case studies, to analyse those adjustments made necessary through international terrorism, as known since September 11th 2001. It argues that corporate asset protection and accurate business risk assessment is vital to the longevity, and resilience of business.

Chapter 7: The Digital Divide

Robert A. Isaak

Subjects: business and management, international business, politics and public policy, international politics, terrorism and security


Robert A. Isaak INTRODUCTION September 11, 2001 was a terrorist reaction to American troops in Saudi Arabia and to a US-dominated globalization of the world economy made possible by the information technology (IT) revolution. This revolution served to widen the wealth gap between the United States and Europe as well as between the developed and developing countries. The question is whether or not the 09/11 transformation of the international system had the effect of freezing these inequalities in place, given the increased theoretical access to the Internet from all places in the world due to globalization. The dot.com-led economic boom in the United States preceding 09/11 permitted the Americans to have a cheaply subsidized, learning-by-doing collective experience that spread access to the Internet to the majority of the population and taught thousands of young entrepreneurs and millions of teenagers and college students the basic technologies and e-thinking required for Internet-based business and entrepreneurship. And just as other developed countries, such as those in Europe, started to come on board, 09/11 threatened to freeze the process, drying up venture capital and slowing down the motivation and tolerance for risk-taking required to transform national economies into global e-competitors. For the latecomers, the e-transformation of their economies appeared suddenly to be more difficult both economically and psychologically. So while the e-revolution spread through globalization, the critical follow-up financing and investment in both businesses and educational institutions slowed down, giving disproportionate competitive advantages to e-businesses and cultures already established. Despite exceptions such...

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