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Edited by Jonathan Michie

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Jonathan Michie

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Edited by Jonathan Michie

With contributions from the leading commentators in the field and an over-arching introduction from the editor, the concerns of this updated and revised Handbook are two-fold. Firstly, to redefine the concept of globalisation and dispel the haze that surrounds it through a systematic and thorough examination of the debate. Secondly, to advance the frontiers of current critical thinking on the role and impact of globalisation, on the winners and losers in the process, and on the implications for society, the economy and governance.
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Edited by Jonathan Michie

The past 30 years are often depicted as an era of globalisation, and even more so with the recent rise of global giants such as Google and Amazon. This updated and revised edition of The Handbook of Globalisation offers novel insights into the rapid changes our world is facing, and how best we can handle them.
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Jonathan Michie

Since the 1980s it had been fashionable to suggest that there was little that individual countries could do in the face of global economic forces, and any attempt to pursue independent policies would be doomed to failure. ‘Even China’, it was often said, was embracing the global free market. The idea that developing countries, such as India, could promote their own developmental interests by sheltering behind exchange controls or national planning had been swept away along with the Berlin Wall. In the globalized economy of the twenty-first century, it was argued, national governments had to go with the flow of global markets. As the 2008 international financial crisis was breaking, the global strategy firm Oxford Analytica held one of its usual daily analysis sessions, but open to those attending its annual conference. The chair briefly summarised the unfolding global crisis, and then went round the table asking the various national experts to report. Despite the consensus referred to above, the reports did not paint a picture of a uniform globalised market to which each country related in the same way. The US and UK had been referred to in the opening statement, being very much at the centre of whatever it was that had caused the worst economic crisis since the 1930s. But when the expert on Brazil was called, he reported that the socialist President Lula had kept its financial sector rather independent of the global markets. Next India, and here too it was reported that it actually hadn’t opened itself up to the global market quite as much as might have been thought. Then China, where, it was reported, the Communist Party had maintained rather a firm grip.

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Jonathan Michie

What is termed ‘globalisation’ has taken many forms over the centuries. The last time we had a ‘free market’ form of globalisation, such as is largely in force across the world today, was in the run up to the First World War; goods, people and capital crossed borders, as the leading industrial economies sought economic advantage in a process that ultimately spilled over into armed conflict. This led to a retrenchment between the world wars, with most governments focusing more on their own domestic economies and policy agendas. Following the Second World War, an era of ‘managed globalisation’ has been dubbed the ‘Golden Age of Capitalism’. This was followed by the era, launched by the Thatcher and Reagan administrations, of deregulation, privatisation, financialisation and demutualisation – of ‘capitalism unleashed’. That led to the 2007–2008 global financial crisis and the 2009 Great Recession. We now need to shape a new historical era, focused on environmental and social sustainability. This will require new economic thinking, and a policy agenda around a global green new deal.

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Jonathan Michie

There could hardly be a more appropriate time in world history to be revisiting the issues of globalisation and democracy. After almost two centuries of what might be regarded as globalisation in the current usage of the term, it has fallen into disrepute. Voters have used the ballot box to reject both the concept of globalisation and the mainstream parties that promoted it. The UK voted to leave the EU, in the 2016 ‘Brexit’ referendum, and the US elected Donald Trump as President. This Research Review brings together the key writings on globalisation and democracy exploring the progression of globalisation as well as themes such as employment, international trade, technology and the environment amongst other important issues. This Research Review provides both scholarly and lay readers an opportunity to analyse how globalisation has impacted the world we live in today.
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Jonathan Michie