What is globalization and how does it affect the world economy? What implications does globalization have for the United States, for Iowa, and for individuals? WorldCanvass guests will explore these and other questions when they gather in the Senate Chamber of the Old Capitol Museum on Friday, December 7, at 5 p.m. The program, which is produced by International Programs and hosted by Joan Kjaer, is free and open to the public.
Globalization isn’t a new phenomenon; international trade and migration have been taking place for centuries, and so has the inevitable political, social and cultural mixing that is an acknowledged result. What makes this wave of globalization different is that, thanks to dramatic technological advancements and instant communications, everything moves at lightning speed.
Some see an increasingly interconnected globe where, given the right planning, cooperation, and good will, almost everything becomes possible….feeding the world, providing opportunity and good wages that lift people out of poverty, curing diseases that have long ravaged whole populations, the lessening of international tensions, and so on. Some fear an unaccountable international set of players and systems that overwhelms less developed nations and forces dependency, resulting in a loss of local control, not to mention a loss of culture.
WorldCanvass guests will help us flesh out the picture of globalization by approaching the discussion from various vantage points. We’ll investigate global economic inequality (real and perceived) and its effect on societal attitudes and behaviors, including contemporary expressions of patriotism and nationalism. We’ll learn about a fourth–generation Iowa company with global reach, headquartered in Cedar Rapids, that is working to feed the world’s peoples and improve nutrition. We’ll get historical perspective on labor issues related to globalization, learn about the impact of globalization on Iowa labor, and get an overview of the complex process of international dispute resolution. We’ll hear reflections from a former U.S. ambassador who’s seen globalization at work around the globe, and we'll speak with a UI alum who’s made a long–term commitment to support engineering students who dream of improving living conditions in the developing world. We bring this all home to Iowa with guests from three UI professional colleges (Business, Law, Engineering), showcasing the many ways in which the UI prepares students for 21st century careers.