Globalisation

EXCLUSIVE: In the Face of the COVID-19 Pandemic We Are Only as Strong as the Weakest of Us

When the COVID-19 virus travelled from Wuhan, China halfway across the world through Europe, the Americas and beyond in the space of a few weeks, it gave us proof, if one was ever needed, of how tightly interconnected we all are. Not only are our globalized economies interdepended, but also we ourselves are one with the environment around us, and with one another. We are one humankind sharing one planet. And yet, all too often we seem to forget it, as we carelessly revert to misguiding differences between “us” and “them.” Take, for example, the distinction between rich and poor countries, or as economists put it, between advanced economies and least developed countries. In the face of COVID-19, the only difference that matters is if we are sick or healthy. Other than that, we are all the same, regardless of economic status or geographic location.

Covid-19 Straw Breaks Free Trade Camel’s Back

Economic growth is supposed to be the tide that lifts all boats. According to the conventional wisdom until recently, growth in China, India and East Asian countries took off thanks to opening up to international trade and investment.

The Commonwealth’s Response to COVID-19

The Coronovirus pandemic has been an unforgiving test of advanced economies. Health systems in the United States, France, Italy, Spain, and the UK have been put under immense pressure, with shortages of doctors, ventilators, personal protective equipment and the capacity to test for the virus. Their economies have been battered and the consequences are spoken of in terms of the Great Depression.

COVID-19: Why We Must Reset Our Thinking

Covid-19 is the most significant event since the Second World War. It changes everything. It brings great sadness to many of us as we lose loved ones, as we see people losing their jobs, and as we see people around the world suffering immensely.

The Crises of 2020 Will Delay the Transition to Clean Energy

The oil slump, global recession and uncertainty about the magnitude of the COVID-19 pandemic will fuel the appetite for cheaper fossil fuel energy and delay investments in renewables, affecting the targets of the Paris Agreement on climate change and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Coronavirus, New Threat for Mexican Migrant Workers in the U.S.

As the high season for agricultural labour in the United States approaches, tens of thousands of migrant workers from Mexico are getting ready to head to the fields in their northern neighbour to carry out the work that ensures that food makes it to people's tables.

Haunting Forest Spirits – is Mother Nature Striking Back?

Epidemic diseases are not random events that afflict societies capriciously and without warning, on the contrary, every society produces its own specific vulnerabilities. To study them is to understand the importance of a society's structure, its standard of living, and its political priorities. […] Epidemics are a mirror, they show who we really are: Our ethics, beliefs, and socio-economic relationships.                                                                                                                                                           Frank Snowden 1

On Watching Contagion: What Do We Learn?

Contagion is a 2011 film by US director Steven Soderbergh (Erin Brockovich, Traffic, Che) that has proved very popular viewing during the first few weeks of the Coronavirus crisis. Set in a fictional global pandemic – modelled on the outbreak of a bat-borne Nipah virus identified in 1999 that killed around 100 people in Malaysia - the film is a tightly-written topical drama with a great castthat includes Matt Damon, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jude Law, Laurence Fishburne, Kate Winslet, Marion Cotillard and Jennifer Ehle.

East Asian Lessons for Controlling Covid-19

By the third week of March 2020, the number of Covid-19 deaths in Italy had overtaken the number of deaths in China. Authorities all over the world are restricting the movements of their populations as part of efforts to control the spread of Covid-19.

Fighting Coronavirus: It’s Time to Invest in Universal Public Health

Austerity policies pushed by international financial institutions have weakened public health systems, despite current financial support packages, condemning many people to die.

TikTok: Expressive Mechanism for many dealing with today’s world

“What do you get from the TikTok videos? Do you prefer the platform for entertainment, passing time or for connecting with your friends? I have seen comical videos, venting sessions and some that do not make any sense what so ever and some are just rude, making fun of others.” I asked the 14-year-old k-popper teenager flipping through the pages of a manga book while he chose to respond in English coming from a Spanish speaking family and studying Mandarin as a third language.

War No More

75 years ago following the end of the Second World War and the first time any state has dropped an atomic bomb, not once, but twice, on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, 51 countries from all continents met to create the United Nations.

Intellectual Property Raises Costs of Living

Many medicines and medical tests are unaffordable to most of humanity owing to the ability of typically transnational pharmaceutical giants to abuse their monopoly powers, enforced by intellectual property laws, to set prices to maximize profits over the long-term.

Financialization Increases Inequality

Financialization has worsened inequality through various channels, including macroeconomic policies. For example, quantitative easing and low, if not negative interest rates have fuelled credit and asset price bubbles, while fiscal spending cuts have adversely affected those depending on government assistance.

UN Chief Warns of Rising Misogyny, Xenophobia, Discrimination, Racism & Hate Speech

As we prepare to bid farewell to 2019, we must take a clearsighted look at the global situation and the new challenges we face. Our world is undergoing a shift. It is no longer bipolar or unipolar. But it is not yet truly multipolar. Balances of power are changing, creating new and dangerous risks.

Social Summit Demands Stronger Commitments in Climate Talks

As the COP25 deliberations enter the decisive final week, representatives of environmental and social organisations gathered in a parallel summit are pressing the governments to adopt stronger commitments in the face of a worsening climate emergency.

Forced to Flee. Displaced with a Dream. Time for Action.

Genesis smiles and holds her hand up proudly to answer questions in class. She claps her hands in support of her classmates when they answer the teachers’ questions correctly. “I miss my cousins and aunts in Venezuela, she says.” Her smile fades and her lips tighten. She struggles to hold back her tears. “I can’t return. I want to stay here in my school, with my new friends.” Her smile returns, as she resolutely states: “I want to become a lawyer, so I can help solve problems.”

Climate Summit Kicks Off, Caught Between Realism and Hope

Tens of thousands of delegates from state parties began working Monday Dec. 2 in the Spanish capital to pave the way to comply with the Paris Agreement on climate change, while at a parallel summit, representatives of civil society demanded that the international community go further.

Businesses Have Key Role in Safeguarding Human Rights

Unanimously endorsed by the UN Human Rights Council in 2011, the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights are the authoritative global reference point articulating the responsibilities of companies to respect and protect human rights.

More Austerity for Developing Countries: It’s Bad News, and It’s Avoidable

After years of austerity, a number of Eurozone countries are now considering expansionary fiscal policies. And in the UK, government spending is set to return to levels last seen in the 1970s. But austerity abounds elsewhere in the world, including in some of the poorest countries.

Liberation, Not Liberalization, Responsible for China’s Economic Miracle

Any balanced assessment of the so-called Chinese economic miracle will recognize that it was extremely successful, not only during the reform period from 1979, but also since Liberation in 1949 despite the setbacks of the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution.

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