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Globalization and Institutions

Redefining the Rules of the Economic Game

Edited by Marie-Laure Djelic and Sigrid Quack

This volume investigates the relationship between economic globalization and institutions, or global governance, challenging the common assumption that globalization and institutionalization are essentially processes which exclude each other. Instead, the contributors to this book show that globalization is better perceived as a dual process of institutional change at the national level, and institution building at the transnational level. Rich, supporting empirical evidence is provided along with a theoretical conceptualization of the main actors, mechanisms and conditions involved in trickle-up and trickle-down trajectories through which national institutional systems are being transformed and transnational rules emerge.
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Conclusion: Globalization as a Double Process of Institutional Change and Institution Building

Marie-Laure Djelic and Sigrid Quack


Marie-Laure Djelic and Sigrid Quack Globalization is a word that suffers from overuse. Still, behind the overstretched concept lies the reality of an economic world that is neither fully contained nor constrained by national boundaries. Economic organization and coordination increasingly reach across national borders and the impact is being felt both within the transnational sphere and, through rebound and indirect impact, at the national level as well. We started this book by acknowledging the need to take into account this transnational reality and its potentially quite significant impact. We now want to point, however, to its full complexity. The focus in previous chapters has been on globalization as a dependent variable, an ‘object’ to be explained rather than an independent variable or an explanatory factor. Globalization can be taken as a given, a context and reality with a significant impact on economic behaviour and coordination – but also potentially on cultural repertoires, political processes and human interactions. This is indeed the approach that dominates in journalistic contributions as well as in most academic work. Questions tend to bear on how globalization is changing our lives, or in Giddens’ words how it is ‘reshaping our lives’ (2000). Generally, the picture that emerges from that kind of approach is one where globalization is a neutral, impersonal, inevitable and ahistorical force (Guillén 2001). Our collective understanding and project in this book has been both different and complementary. We have treated globalization as a phenomenon in the making, to be described, explained and understood....

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