Skip to 0 minutes and 8 secondsWelcome to week three. This is a week when we move beyond defining and describing to understanding. That is, after all, the key mission of the Graduate Institute is to understand not just globalisation, but international affairs in general-- history, law, economics, and politics. And what better place to do it. We are smack in the centre of the institutions who help guide global governance. Just over there we have the UN High Commission for Refugees. They're burning the midnight oil every night trying to take care of the Syrian crisis. Next to them, International Telecommunications Union. That's the organisation that helps keep the telephone systems of many different nations working together. They've been doing it for decades.

Skip to 0 minutes and 57 secondsJust beyond that is the World Intellectual Property Rights, which governs the international governance of copyrights, intellectual property of different types. Moving a little bit over there, we have UNCTAD, United Nations Conference on Trade And Development, which is a great big think tank, focusing on the issues of developing countries in the world trading system. And right next to them, we have the granddaddy of them all, the UN, looking after peace. It's in the building that was originally established in 1927, when the UN was called the League of Nations. Now, this week, we will look at three big questions. First of all, why did globalisation change so radically around 1990? We've already had hints about that.

Skip to 1 minute and 47 secondsBut we're going to take a deeper dive. Second question is, why does globalisation's impact differ so much across nations? And lastly, why does globalisation impact differ for different people within nations? Those three topics are what we're going to fill this week's time with. It will involve some basic economics. And that will require you to do some mental gymnastics. It's going to be a little more intense, but I guarantee you what you learn this week will not only help you understand globalisation, but it will help you understand international economic relations, past, present, and future.

Introduction to the week

The big question here is: Why is globalisation’s impact so different across nations and within nations?

To tackle this question, you’ll learn some economics this week. The economics is quite essential and thus applicable to many things beyond the scope of this FutureLearn course. Indeed, I believe that the economics you learn will help you make sense of many aspects of the world we live in.

The activities this week are organised around three questions:

  • Why did globalisation change so radically around 1990?
  • Why does globalisation impact different nations so differently?
  • Why does globalisation impact different people so differently inside nations?

This week will require you to do some mental gymnastics, but you’ll learn things that help you understand the world (not just globalisation).

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This video is from the free online course:

International Affairs: Globalisation

The Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies