Edited by Jonathan Michie
Chapter 3: The Scope and Implications of Globalisation
Jonathan Perraton During the 1990s and early 2000s ‘globalisation’ became arguably the buzzword of the times. For all its resonance in academic and popular discourse, ‘globalisation’ often remained a vague and elusive concept. Globalisation has been widely used to refer to sharp increases in levels of international economic flows since the 1970s. Using various definitions, authors have typically claimed either that it heralds the demise of the nation state or that it amounts to nothing new. A growing academic school – ably represented by Paul Hirst and Grahame Thompson in their contribution to this volume in Chapter 1 and elsewhere (Hirst et al. 2009) – argues that there is less than meets the eye to this phenomenon. However, these conceptions of globalisation are typically inadequate and their analysis of empirical evidence consequently misleading. Further, much has changed since earlier debates, with the 2008– financial crisis illustrating the interconnectedness of the global economy, including the evolving relationship between developed and emerging economies. The crisis has also undermined claims that globalisation will ensure generalised prosperity. This chapter proposes an analytic approach to globalisation, argues that available evidence does point to a fundamental transformation in the world economy, which in key respects is unprecedented, and draws implications for nation states and the welfare of their citizens. Conceptions of globalisation Broadly speaking there are three approaches to globalisation, referred to here as the hyper-globalist, the sceptical and the transformationalist views (Held et al., 1999). For the hyper-globalists contemporary globalisation has created a single global economy transcending...
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