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Is Globalization Really Just Xenophobia?

The Takeaway: Ask most managers to define globalization and they'll probably tell you something like, "an irresistible and growing part of economic reality" or "the dominant force shaping the world's economies." But ask Columbia's Greenwald and his co-author Judd Kahn the same question and their answer would be strikingly different: globalization is "the irrational fear that someone in China will steal your job." In their new book the authors,
make the argument that many of the fundamental assumptions about globalization... are "either highly questionable or largely false." Instead they argue that globalization is not a new trend, that crucial local forces such as improvements in productivity and changes in demand are ignored, and that hard data has been selectively used or underused in favor of anecdotal evidence.
Job losses in manufacturing and routine services in Europe and the US, they argue, should be put down to changes in demand and increased productivity due to improved technology. These changes are more like the shift away from agriculture than anything that we normally mean by globalization.

The Question: Does all the hoopla over globalization just amount to so much xenophobia?

(Images of globes by _sarchi, CC 2.0)

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