Global management

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Impacts and Response to Globalization in the Caribbean

Globalization as defined by the European Commission is the process by which markets and production in different countries are becoming increasingly interdependent due to the dynamics of trade in goods and services and flows of capital and technology. (European Commission, 1997, pg.45) Globalization is a phenomenon, as simple as it iscomplex. The inherent simplicity of the subject spawns from fundamental human needs and wants. Quite simply, no nation exists in a vacuum-, that is, none are completely self reliant. This immutable fact, partnered with the emergence of a culture of materialism and a seemingly insatiable appetite for “more”, makes globalization unavoidable.

In the context of scarcity regarding land, labour, capitaland other factors of production, self sufficiency is not even remotely attainable or otherwise sustainable, needless to say, more so in our small and dependent Caribbean community.

On the other side of the fence, the complexity of globalization exists in the intricacy of the networks that span globally. These networks are the lynchpins that make trade and commerce possible. These networks areundoubtedly achievable and maintainable due to technological advancements, most visibly in the realms of transportation and communication.
At this juncture, I would like to pose a question to the brilliant minds out there in TV land. The question is-Does Globalization have a more significant impact on technology or is technology more influential to Globalization?

Through travelling, media,scientific and technical workshops, the internet and many other communication channels, globalization allows the transmission of knowledge at a much faster pace than in the past. However, this does not automatically imply that developing countries are beneficiaries of these technological advances. On the contrary, this will strongly rely on the nature of the technology and of the policiesimplemented in both advanced and developing countries, with the latter group of course being less influential.

Ok, so far we understand that technological developments are conceived as the main facilitator and driving force behind most of the globalization process. However it is important to note that Multinational companies (MNC’s), through foreign direct investment and their penetration ofinternational borders are the vehicles that facilitate for the transmission of technology to the Caribbean. Large MNC’s like Dell, Hewlett Packard and Apple, the same companies that make your laptops, IPods and Blackberry’s, in their pursuit of profits, transfer these innovative technologies to developing countries. The question then presents itself-Are Caribbean countries participating in the creation ofthese technologies or are we simply just recipients and bystanders?

Globalization is all around us. Working at the West Indies Cricket Board has opened my eyes to exactly how instrumental technology is in the functioning of a Caribbean company. Unlike other cricket boards like the England and Whales (ECB) and Australian (ACB) that are located in one country, where the political, economic,social, technological, environmental and legal climate are for the most part, consistent throughout the nations respectively, the WICB does not enjoy this luxury.

The WICB, is head quartered in Antigua and is responsible for the governance of cricket across the Caribbean. Each of these countries has different environmental conditions. These differences magnify the difficulty for the WICB regardingthe execution of its primary function. Due to the geographic makeup of the Caribbean, this would prove to be quite a task. In the interest of time and money, communication amongst member territories must be as swift, efficient and cost effective as is practicably possible. Technologies such as email, Skype and other teleconferencing hardware and software have revolutionized the way the WICB...
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