Globalisation refers to the way the many places and people are becoming ever more closely linked. 

Countries have always been connected through trade, colonialism and cooperation through international organisations e.g. UN.  Post 1940s globalisation is different because of:

- Lengthening connections between people and places (bottled water brought to the UK from Fiji, 16,000 km away

- Deepening connections to other people and places in more areas

Population changes are an important part of globalisation as greater levels of international migration are a strong influence of globalisation of population dynamics.  Globalisation does however concentrate wealth in certain areas.

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Demographic Transition Model

The Demographic Transition Model suggests that populations follow common patterns, divided into 5 stages of development.  This is based on relative changes in Crude BR and DR.  It does however link demographic changes to the evolution of the economy. What is important is that it

Demonstrated that Economic growth shadowed by:

  • Declining DR and BR

  • Declining FR (People choose to have fewer children)

  • Longer life expectancy (health care improved)

    From this it can be seen that demographic changes are both a cause and effect of globalisation. i.e. The vast increase in numbers in stages 2-3 is what drives megacity growth, creating global hubs (and markets too); while globalisation of technology and perhaps cultural norms can be advanced as a reason why all nations are ultimately 'expected' to go through the stages as described.

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Factors that have accelerated globalisation

Effects of globalisation of migration

People are seen as global citizens because we can visit or move to distant places e.g. UK to Australia.  There is a distinct link between globalisation, inward investment to cities and migration.  Inward investment is where a city takes money from an external source and uses it to improve their region by investing in industries, businesses etc.  This then leads to job opportunities in that area which will result in migration to that particular location.  Globalisation has also made it easier to travel, import and export to other countries.  Many choose to invest in china and expand their businesses their due to cheap labour.  This has then resulted in people migrating to the bigger cities in search of work.

It is important to note, that although globalisation has made it easier for money, food and goods to travel, for people it has become harder mainly due to terrorism.  America is one of the strictest countries for letting people cross their boarders, along with European countries

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Global disparities in wealth and poverty

In the past the world was divided into ‘developed’ and ‘developing’, however globalisation has led to the distribution of people living in poverty to become more complex

  • A large number of previously poor nations are now relatively wealthy (in terms of GDP) e.g. Malaysia, Egypt, Brazil & China

  • Also rich elites in many countries  - make it difficult to generalise about rich and poor nations as a whole

  • Places such as Sao Paulo, Beijing and Bangalore – low HDI, but are home to millions of people with affluent lifestyles

Grouped into 3 categories –

  1. Types of countries i.e. economic groups  Don’t forget the BRICS

2. Teams of globalisation i.e. political groups e.g. EU, NAFTA3These political groupings are different to economic groups such as NICs as they: Have allowed trade agreements to be drawn up that allows national boundaries to be crossed and therefore trade to flow freely. Contain nations at varying levels of economic development e.g. USA and Mexico are part of NAFTa

3. TNCs – groups countries by companies i.e. McDonaldsThese help to build bridges between nations and promote common patterns of consumption e.g. Burger King launched in China in 2005.  The largest firms have ‘branch plants’ in most countries which enables them to keep costs down and ensure their products are consumed across the world/

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Why countries group together

Trade blocs exist for trading purposes; bring economic strength and security to nations.  Free trade is encouraged by the removal of internal tariffs and can also protect members by establishing a common external tariff for foreign imports.  This ensures that it is more expensive to import goods and therefore customers will prefer to purchase trade bloc goods instead.  The EU has also integrated a common currency, the euro with some shared political legislation e.g. European Parliament established in 1979.

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Benefits of trade blocs

Benefits -Removal of internal tariffs allows:

  • Markets to grow – in 2004 ten new nations joined the EU and Tesco gained access to 75m extra customers

  • Firms that have a comparative advantage should prosper e.g. French wine-makers have advantages due to their climate and soil

  • Enlarged market increases demand raising the volume of production and lowering manufacturing costs = economies of scale

  • Smaller national firms within a trade bloc can merge to form TNCs therefore making their operations more cost-effective

  • In the EU, members are eligible for EU Structural Funds to help develop their economies

 NAMED EXAMPLE: TRADE BLOC – NAFTA Established in January 1994 to eliminate tariffs and other restrictions on free trade between US, Canada and Mexico. Differences between NAFTA and the EU The agreement is limited to trade only so does not allow free movement of labour, nor does it seek political union

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TNCs and global business and trade


ü  Raising living standards – TNCs invest in the economies of the developing nations

ü  Transfer of technology – south Korean firms e.g. Samsung have learned to design products for foreign markets

ü  Political stability – investment by TNCs has contributed to economic growth and political stability e.g. China

Raising environmental awareness – due to large corporate image TNCs do respond to criticism e.g. Co-op has ‘green credentials’


xTax avoidance – many avoid paying full taxed in countries they operate in through concessions

xLimited linkages – FDI does not always help developing nations economies

xGrowing global wealth divide – selective investment in certain global areas is creating a widening divide e.g. Southeast Asia vs. sub-Saharan Africa

Environmental degradation – example of Bhopal, India disaster in 1984

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