Bruce C. Greenwald and Judd Kahn – glob•ali•za´•tion: n. The Irrational Fear that Someone in China Will Take Your Job

Bruce C. Greenwald (who teaches in Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business) and Judd Kahn (a former history professor) prove globalists to be dead wrong in Glob•ali•za´•tion: n. The Irrational Fear that Someone in China Will Take Your Job. While we’re supposed to live in the Globalization 3.0 world according to Thomas L. Friedman c.s. the net effects of factors related to globalization seem absent. Necessary are good statistics (remember the lies, damned lies & statistics quotes?), and better research than mere anecdotes and unrelated data or non-correlations.

Local factors, better: local choices are much powerful than global factors or globalization as single entity. For example, the so called BRIC countries perform much better nowadays under same global conditions. Other factors need to be uncovered. Many sectors like healthcare, education, social arrangements, government, food distribution, services have a local focus: products & services are made, offered and consumed locally. Energy, telecommunication, utilities are all delivered locally too.

Globalists exaggerate their influence, while anti-globalists, present at top meetings to demonstrate, may have other concerns than pure economics. The authors present a 4 years economics graduate level education in 1 book. I was happy to be familiar with all factors researched (e.g. wages, profitability, economies of scale, barriers & tarriffs, competitive advantages, global branding, information asymmetry, moral hazard, Marshall Plan, Bretton Woods, Gold Standard, investments, savings, currency exchange rates, productivity measurements, IMF and World Bank).

Written in 2008 at the dawn of the current economic crisis, the authors draw many lessons from the past centuries, rather than trusting news networks anchormen or latest hypes. In the final chapter they finally leave the field of economics and pay attention to other global problems like the environmental change, terror and diseases.

I used the 5-disc (6+ hours) audio book edition of the book to absorb its message to many of us working in services oriented (local) economies: have no fear that someone in China will take your job.