Even in a Digital World, Globalization Is Not Inevitable

Pankaj Ghemawat: “…a significant number of experts continue to believe in the virtually unlimited potential of globalization. Most of them focus on digitalization specifically and on communications technology, though some attention continues to be paid to transportation infrastructure (e.g., Parag Khanna’s Connectography).”

“I like to refer to such exaggerated perceptions of globalization as ‘globaloney,‘ a term coined in the 1940s by Clare Boothe Luce. Thomas Friedman’s famous proposal that, thanks to the internet, the ‘world is flat’ (advanced in a 2005 book bearing that title) articulates this idea in a way that is clear and simple — and wrong.”

“While I agree that digitalization can facilitate globalization in certain respects (e.g., by making it easier for small firms to export) here are eight reasons why I am unconvinced that digital technologies are sufficient, given everything else that is going on in the world, to drive globalization forward…”
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