• Grenoble Ecole de Management

Global Studies: The Future of Globalization

Understand why some governments try to regain sovereignty by leaving global institutions.

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  • Duration

    4 weeks
  • Weekly study

    6 hours
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The CPD Certification Service

The CPD Certification Service was established in 1996 and is the leading independent CPD accreditation institution operating across industry sectors to complement the CPD policies of professional and academic bodies. Find out more.

Understand opposition to globalization

Globalization has created countless opportunities in the last century, but it’s also changed international power structures, now we interact with our environment, and supply models around the world. While nobody can stop the pace of globalization, it doesn’t mean they can’t try.

Governments and citizens across the world attempt either to benefit from globalization - and try to limit its negative effect - or they try to avoid it.

On this course, you’ll explore why people are either pro or anti globalization. You’ll discover why some governments and countries choose boundaries and demarcation and others choose integration.

Ce cours peut être entièrement suivi en français. Des traductions françaises sont disponibles, les discussions se déroulant sur un forum francophone.

Is it possible to withdraw from globalization?

Numerous countries have either tried to limit the impact of global markets within their borders - many see this as a refusal of Western culture, while others are subject to authoritarian regimes. You’ll look at a number of examples to review the factors and challenges associated with refusing to build strong international relations.

Explore what we mean by global culture

Refusing global culture means rejecting moral imperatives that have often been created by other cultures or collectives. You’ll review what these include, and consider critiques of humanitarian law and human rights, and how some may choose to refuse universal norms.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 9 seconds Globalization is a process that shrinks time and space.

Skip to 0 minutes and 14 seconds It also splits the world into two: the West and the Rest, East and West, North and South. The latest step in the globalization process

Skip to 0 minutes and 23 seconds goes even further: it splits countries into supporters of change and its opponents. This sets it apart from the former waves of sudden acceleration and proliferation of trade and war. In the past, the majority of a population was either not affected by world affairs or simply ignored them. People are now confronted to countless changes in their everyday life. Some are welcome, like a better health care, or Internet connection. Some are not, like unemployment or increasing inequality. Above all, the states that made it all possible are now exposed to the undesirable and unexpected impact of a global vulnerability to world trends. Take the world news, every morning, at random,

Skip to 1 minute and 10 seconds during the past five years: nationalism has made a comeback with a touch of populism (nearly half of the electorate in France, Italy and the US voted for a populist party in 2016-2017). These voters refused to entrust the major stakeholders of the globalization process – international organizations, multinational corporations, and global finance. There are acute divisions within countries as different as Brazil, Venezuela, Austria, and Ukraine. And, of course, we are aware of people’s fatigue with extant arrangements such as the European Union, NATO, trade agreements, and even the G 20. Europe is the place where such movements are the most visible. This is where the temptation to leave has been put into practice.

Skip to 2 minutes and 1 second This is where GREXIT, BREXIT and even FREXIT were the major issues in overheated electoral campaigns in Greece, Britain, and France. Simultaneously, Donald Trump has promised to wall up the United States – but there is evidence that this desire to pull out from treatises and organizations is less Western than global.

Skip to 2 minutes and 27 seconds In Turkey, Russia, and Venezuela, nationalists fight hard to monopolize power and limit foreign influence on their political system. The main divide now opposes those who want to retrieve popular sovereignty and those who can trade it off for more welfare or more wealth.

Skip to 2 minutes and 45 seconds Or more rights: leaving international coalitions does not suffice; refusing standardization and uniformity matters even more. The people want to govern, against politicians, political parties, and world institutions. They want to move and settle wherever they like. They want justice and efficiency. This course tells the story of this titanic conflict between the elites and the people to rule the world and even their own country. Should they step out of the leading group of nations on their way to a more global world? Or should they stay with them? Leave or remain; globalize or perish; or, more simply, adapt or retreat.


  • Week 1

    Withdrawal: Is it thinkable, is it possible?

    • Introduction: Why this course?

      The effects of globalization – commodification, financialisation, relocation, standardization – can be measured objectively. They can also be anticipated subjectively, for which symbolic measures are required.

    • What is globalization?

      A movement that enables people and countries to connect. It is an ever expanding and accelerating process, beyond our control.

    • Leaving or staying in

      Should we pay our fair share of the collective burden or selfishly abandon others to their fate? Continue efforts to improve globalization, or abandon any hope of solving poverty and changing tradition?

    • Refusing the West?

      How the problem arises in various groups of countries (America, Europe, Russia, China, Japan, Korea, Brazil, India, Africa, The Middle East, Southeast Asia; Russia, Turkey, Iran; and finally, failing or landlocked states, LDCs).

    • Defecting

      Leaving alliances, treaties and organizations such as NAFTA, CETA, TAFTA, COP 21; the Eurozone, the EU, UN agencies, International Criminal Court; NATO, OSCE, GCC; G8, ICANN, etc.; partially or fully, immediately or in the future

    • Refusing global culture?

      Abandon multilateral negotiations and cosmopolitan ideas? Reject the moral imperatives judged universal by the West and all the global formats, procedures, or protocols that could become local again?

    • Is a break necessary or inevitable?

      Are we witnessing partial withdrawals that are limited in space and time, or, on the contrary, is there a snowball effect leading towards a new phase of world history?

  • Week 2

    Stay in the race?

    • What are the options?

      No longer assume global security responsibilities? Give up all forms of globalization or only those that are bothersome? Lead the race and support regional and multilateral institutions?

    • Live alone?

      Being inspired by small autonomous countries (Switzerland, Iceland, etc.) or autarkic states (North Korea, Cuba), or even postmodern communities (vegan, animalist, etc.)? Accepting existing borders, revising them, ignoring them?

    • Farewell to progress?

      Hostility to expertise (antiparliamentarianism)? Back to anti-productivism (neo-Marxism, ecologism)? De-growth through fear that the human species will die out? Close borders for fear that foreigners will replace natives?

    • Join forces to show others the way?

      Strengthen ties, renew alliances and conduct joint operations; Spread multilateralism and strengthen institutions; Lead globalization, impose one’s vision.

    • A new dilemma

      Set up binding rules or get rid of them? Build walls, live apart? Contract or pledge? Channel globalization, or ignore it?

  • Week 3

    World Order and National Disorders

    • Undoing the world?

      State, nation, democracy and the emancipation of repressed peoples have lost some of the popularity they enjoyed in the 19th century, especially with leaders who show little respect for the world they have inherited.

    • Against democratization?


    • Multipolarity without mutlilaterality?

      Do plurilateralism and multistakeholderism compromise the institutionalization of the world centred around a single government?

  • Week 4

    Opening up or Othering

    • Borders or Filters?

      The future of borders is uncertain. International agreements make them permeable, but do not erase them. National governments strengthen them, but still allow people they consider undesirable to pass through.

    • Major trends: to change or not to change?

      Faced with globalization, are we heading towards a peaceful form of reconciliation which will accelerate globalization? Or are we being lured by a mythical lost paradise, which will slow globalization down?

    • How to conclude this course?

      Lost compass, unstable equilibriums, complex expectations? Are international relations becoming hardly diplomatic and occasionally rough? Looking for economies of scale, pooling of resources, networking of stakeholders?

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Who is this accredited by?

The CPD Certification Service
The CPD Certification Service:

The CPD Certification Service was established in 1996 and is the leading independent CPD accreditation institution operating across industry sectors to complement the CPD policies of professional and academic bodies.

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Evaluate the balance of power between isolationists and federalists, local communities and cosmopolitans
  • Interpret tentative accounts of withdrawal from institutions and treaties (Brexit, Trump, Russia or Turkey) as they are sketchily explained in the press and the social media
  • Explore major concepts in political science and international studies (including history, international sociology, and international economics)
  • Improve your understanding of current international politics

Who is the course for?

This course is suitable for anyone with an interest in Global Studies who wishes to further their understanding of globalization and global culture.

It is ideal for students with a background in business and international studies, global business professionals, and IGO and NGO experts who deal with intercultural issues and wish to enhance their understanding of international power structures and their approach to globalization.

Though a BA in a related field would be an asset, no experience in Global Studies is required to benefit from this course.

Who will you learn with?

Pr. of political science, University of Grenoble Alpes & Institut Universitaire de France (Global & Comparative Politics); visiting scholar, Grenoble Ecole de Management

Who developed the course?

Grenoble Ecole de Management

For the past 30 years, Grenoble Ecole de Management (GEM) has established itself in France and abroad as a leading business school through expertise in technology, innovation and entrepreneurship.

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