Global Business and the Making of the Modern World
Chapter 9: The end of nationality? Global firms and borderless worlds
The view that global firms were becoming divorced from the nation state began to be widely expressed as the pace of globalization accelerated from the 1980s. The consequences of the growing global integration of international production, the international dispersion of key functions such as technological innovation within MNE systems, and the fact that some MNEs employ far greater numbers of people and sell far more products and services outside their home economy than within have all encouraged the hypothesis of a “borderless world,” in the words of Kenichi Ohmae, in 1990. he limitations of the “borderless world” hypothesis have since been much discussed. It has been shown that the importance of geography has not disappeared, and that trade and investment flows continue to display patterns which suggest that the world is more regionalized than globalized. Rugman has described the “regionalization” of production, while Ghemawat has talked of “semi-globalization.” However the scale and scope of a handful of global corporations continued to prompt descriptions of how they dwarfed national states. Chandler and Mazlish described them as the new Leviathans.
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