Students explore the implications of strategies for economic globalization by developing policy guidelines that attempt to maximize the opportunities and minimize the challenges for various groups who may be affected.
Introduction to strategies to promote economic globalization
Explain to students that there are various strategies for promoting economic globalization. With suggestions from students, list various economic and political decisions that contribute to economic globalization. The list should address issues such as:
- trade liberalization
- foreign investment
- stimulation of economic growth
- conversion to knowledge economy
- multilingual and multicultural policies.
Research economic globalization strategies
Direct students, individually or in groups, to gather basic information about one of these practices, including specific instances of where these actions have been implemented; e.g., outsourcing of call centres to Alberta and eastern Canada, membership in La Francophonie. Search the above-listed terms in online resources such as Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia to find informative Web sites describing the history and nature of these practices (see References).
You may want to adapt the charts and strategies in Reporter's Log (Support Material) to structure this activity around the 5W questions.
Share research findings
Arrange for each group to present its findings to the whole class.
List opportunities and challenges of economic strategies
Explain to students that almost every decision, including decisions on economic globalization, presents opportunities and challenges. Direct students to work in groups to compile lists of the potential advantages and disadvantages for one of these practices. Students should consider the perspectives both of the implementing group or country and of others who may be affected by these decisions.
You may want to adapt the charts and strategies in Positive and Negative Factors (Support Material) to structure and assess this activity.
Develop policies that maximize opportunities and minimize challenges
Encourage each group of students to imagine they have been commissioned by a United Nations agency to develop policy on the terms and conditions for use of one strategy for economic globalization. The objective is to maximize the opportunities and minimize the challenges for various groups who may be affected. To be fair, the policy should balance the interests of countries that are more economically developed with those that are less economically developed. The policy should also reflect concerns for economic and environmental implications.
You may want to suggest four approaches to structure students' response:
- Explain the nature of the strategy and offer examples of its use.
- Review the main advantages and disadvantages (economic and environmental).
- Propose how extensively this strategy should be used and under what conditions or restraints.
- Discuss how the proposed policy maximizes the opportunities and minimizes the challenges for various groups who may be affected.
Critique proposed policies from different points of view
Invite the rest of the class to assume the role of representatives of various countries, nongovernmental groups, international agencies and multinational corporations. The audience's responsibility is to critique the proposed policy from their assigned role. The presenting group is to defend the effectiveness and fairness of their proposed policy in light of the objections raised. To reduce the amount of class time required, you may want to divide the class in half so two discussions can be held concurrently.
Revise proposed policies
Encourage the presenting group to revise its proposed policy in light of the critiques raised by the various "representatives."