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Globalization – What, Why, and How to Measure Essay

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GLOBALIZATION – WHAT, WHY, AND HOW TO MEASURE
Niko Schlamberger1,2
Statistical Office of the Republic of Slovenia

Summary
Globalization is considered to be a relatively new phenomenon and is consequently neither
well defined nor well understood. Normally it is economic globalization that is thought to be
worth of study and observation. It is only naturally to study it from this angle as we are used
to economic statistics of all kinds and we are thus exploring a territory where we feel
relatively confident. While it is true that this is an important point of view as it has vast
economic consequences it is also true that just this point of view does not provide an answer
regarding other, possibly less agreeable consequences of globalization. Just to illustrate: why
would crowds violently demonstrate during summits in different parts of the world if
globalization is beneficial to all? There must be something more to it than meets the eye.
Indeed there is and it is an intention of this contribution to try to provide a comprehensive
look at the phenomenon. Neither is it new nor is it limited to economy and economic domain
alone. While it is true that this is probably the easiest way to apply statistics to it, there is
much more to do if we want to at least try to outline a near satisfactory picture. First comes
the problem of definition. There are only first attempts to define the economic globalization,
but this is not nearly enough to encompass the whole picture. So an acceptable definition to
suit economic aspects, but also other ones, must be provided in the first place. Then there
comes the question of measurement: why would we want to measure globalization? There is a
general answer that statistics measures everything, so why not globalization as well. As every
measurement has its price and its purpose we will try to provide a better reason for this one.
Third question is then how to measure. If we have succeeded in (1) providing the...

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