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Governments, Globalization, and International Business$
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John H. Dunning

Print publication date: 1999

Print ISBN-13: 9780198296058

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0198296053.001.0001

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An International Political Economy Perspective

An International Political Economy Perspective

(p.132) 4 An International Political Economy Perspective
Governments, Globalization, and International Business

Susan Strange

Oxford University Press

Embraces a broad canvas of political economic issues, first offering a timely reminder that, in our attempts to assess the consequences of globalization on the role of national governments, we should not neglect its wider implications for the global economic system. Second, in a discussion of the notion of power, the author argues that although economic wealth has become less concentrated in the hegemonies of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, this does not mean that the power that remains is of no consequence. However, she envisages that the structural sovereignty of the nation state—the freedom of national governments to pursue independent lines of action—is likely to be eroded as a result of deepening cross‐border integration (globalization), and illustrates this contention by referring to three areas of macroeconomic management (counter‐cyclical policy, monetary stability and the financing of state budgets), and three of macro‐organizational management (industrial and competition policy, labour relations, and crime protection). Strange goes on to assert that, although most consequences of globalization are favourably viewed by firms (and particularly by MNEs ), others (notably the instability of the international finance system and exchange rates) are not. Last, she suggests that, to most people, the effects of globalization are more ambiguous than those facing firms or governments, as they embrace a range of social and ethical, as well as economic issues; she outlines three such issues often neglected by scholars—family life and flexible working systems, consumer protection, and provision for retirement and old age.

Keywords:   companies, competition, competition policy, consumer protection, counter‐cyclical policy, crime protection, economic policy, family life, firms, flexible working systems, globalization, government, industrial policy, labour relations, macroeconomics, macro‐organizational management, market competition, monetary stability, multinational enterprises, national government, old age, political economy, power, retirement, social aspects, sovereignty, state budgets

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