enterprise. Specialised knowledge of how a product works creates jobs in areas such as information technology (IT) support. multiculturalism the official Australian Government policy of encouraging immigration from diverse, ethnic backgrounds. It also refers to the promotion and encouragement of the retention of ethnic languages and cultures within Australian society. popular culture considered to be more mainstream than ‘high culture’. It is associated with ‘lighter’ forms of entertainment such as sporting events, television programs, comic strips and rock concerts. rationalisation to eliminate what is considered unnecessary, in order to make it more efficient. secular a term meaning ‘non-religious’. sovereignty the supreme and unrestricted power to govern a state. transnational corporations (TNCs) large international companies whose operations take place in both developed and less developed countries; their headquarters are usually located in developed countries. World Bank an international organisation made up of three United Nations (UN) agencies. It provides less developed countries (LDCs) with technical assistance and reconstruction and development finance.
Glossary of selected terms
deregulation removing government controls and supervision. economic restructuring the significant and enduring changes in the nature and structure of the economy brought about, primarily, by the emergence of the global economy. globalisation the integration of the world’s economy through the mass consumption of mainly Western culture, technology and trade. Globalisation affects economic, political, social, cultural and environmental decision-making. global village a term used to describe how the world appears to be getting smaller through the accessibility of technology—especially technologies that facilitate the transfer of information. Thus, the actions that occur in one corner of the globe can rapidly and significantly affect people elsewhere. high culture incorporates elements of lasting value such as art, literature, theatre, ballet, opera and classical music. Some critics consider its content to be ‘high brow’ or ‘intellectual’ when compared with ‘popular culture’. homogenised a term used to describe when one culture becomes similar to another. intellectual capital using ideas, knowledge or inventions as a means of gaining material wealth through a business
What is globalisation?
No culture is static. Ideas, technologies, products, and people move from one place to another. When cultures come into contact through migration, trade, or the latest telecommunications devices, they influence each other. Sometimes cultures cross-pollinate, exchange foods, music, sports. At other times, say critics of globalisation, a culture swamps another like an invasive, fast-reproducing weed. Cultures have evolved in response to contact for thousands of years. But the pace has changed. In the past the influences of distant cultures came slowly, delayed by long journeys. Today, because of the telephone, the television, the Internet, telecommunications satellites, world trade, and long-distance travel, cultural influences can spread across the planet as fast as the click of a mouse. National Geographic, August 1999
Figure 2.4.1 Paris Disneyland: an example of the spread of American popular culture. CULTURAL INTEGRATION 269
GLOBALISATION: THE HUMAN DIMENSION
Globalisation is what happens when you lose your job in Brunswick, Bankstown or Elizabeth because the company for which you work has been bought out by the Australian subsidiary of a Dallas-based transnational company that has decided to relocate its production of T-shirts to Mexico because of cheaper wage costs and lower health and safety standards. It is what happens when you finally get a new job in Brisbane under a new employment contract that lowers your wages and conditions and your boss explains that this is essential to compete with Mexican, or...