The Selected Essays of John H. Dunning, Volume II
Chapter 3: Some Paradoxes of the Emerging Global Economy: The Multinational Solution
Dunning2 01 chaps 19/7/02 11:22 am Page 60 3. Some paradoxes of the emerging global economy: the multinational solution* INTRODUCTION In approaching the end of the twentieth century, one cannot but be struck by both the similarities and differences of circumstances to those faced by our forefathers one hundred years ago. Then, as now, was an era of dramatic and widespread technological change.1 Then, as now, a new generation of telecommunication advances was shrinking the boundaries of economic activity. Then, as now, the organizational structures of firms and the socio-institutional framework of countries were in a state of flux. Then, as now, the cartography of political space was being reconfigured. Then, as now, the jurisdiction of national governments was being questioned, and the locus and composition of civic responsibilities were being redefined. Then, as now, new relationships and alliances were being forged between, and within, private and public institutions, and among different ethnic, religious and social groups. But, to a more discerning observer, the differences between the two ages are more marked than the similarities. Key among these is that, while the events of the late nineteenth century were taking place within a well-established and widely accepted social and political order, those now occurring seem to be challenging long-cherished ideologies and values – and, in some cases, the very institutional fabric of society. At the same time, contemporary events are moulding a very unpredictable future – both for individuals and for institutions – and, more often than not, they are as divisive...
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