ELE 3749 Globalization

Norwegian version

ELE 3749 Globalization

Responsible for the course
Steffen Johannessen, Eli Moen

Department of Communication and Culture

According to study plan

ECTS Credits

Language of instruction

The development and distribution of new and affordable communication technologies have important impacts on contemporary societies. Changes in the economy, information technologies, and goods- and passenger transport have significant consequences for world trade, social organization, governance, migration, culture and the environment today. Organizations and businesses are being managed and organized in new ways, and production and employment conditions are rapidly changing. Such processes also affect how people experience and understand the world they live in. This is not only reflected in widespread contemporary globalization discourses about risks, vulnerability and political, social, cultural, and economic integration. It also has important impacts on globalization itself. While the world has become more integrated, the role of physical distance has, in many areas, become less important. Simultaneously, however, the local or particular has acquired greater importance in a world where borders and boundaries are challenged. This course is centered on a collection of fundamental themes and key concepts that shall contribute to increased understanding of globalization processes in today's world. Thus, the course can help to put more specialized competence acquired other fields of study in a broader global perspective. The course aims to sensitize students about important globalization processes, as well as central preconditions for, and consequences of, globalization.

Learning outcome
Acquired knowledge
On completion of the course the students shall have:

  • Developed insights into important technological, economic, political discourses that concern globalization.
  • Become familiar with central historical preconditions for globalization.
  • An overview and knowledge of key concepts that will enable them to understand both subjective and objective dimensions of globalization.
  • Learned how to understand the relationship between local and global processes through concepts such as 'glocalization'.
  • Become acquainted with important social, political and economic aspects of transnational migration and diasporas.
  • An overview of important economic changes and understand what not being part of globalization means.
  • Knowledge about the transition to a network-society, its political and social implications, as well as how international corporations and organizations are being managed and organized in new ways.
  • Knowledge about the neo-liberal turn and its effects on production, commodities and services within different sectors.
  • Knowledge about the development of a global labor market and new atypical employment conditions.
  • Understood changes in culture and the importance of identity in a globalized world, and be familiar with the contemporary resurgence of politicized national, ethnic and religious groups.

Acquired skills
On completion of the course the students shall be able to:
  • Identify historical and contemporary development trends in globalization.
  • Make use of key concepts that will enable them to discuss and understand both subjective and objective dimensions of globalization.
  • Identify and discuss transnational political, economic, social and cultural changes, as well as how these dimensions are interwoven in a globalized world.
  • Discuss various global problem areas, such as climate change, trade, migration, terrorism, law and politics, and to be able to account for the changing role of the nation state with regard to this

On completion of the course, the students should be able to reflect critically on the complex field of globalization.

No special prerequisite knowledge is required

Compulsory reading
Eriksen, Thomas Hylland. 2014. Globalization : The Key Concepts. 2. London: Bloomsbury Academic. 224

Collection of articles:
Johannessen, Steffen F. 2015. Globalisering: utvalgte artikler. Handelshøyskolen BI

Recommended reading

Course outline

  • Historical preconditions for globalization.
  • Transition from the local and concrete to an ever more abstract and disembedded world, which facilitates interaction and integration on a global scale.
  • Development of new technologies, and consequences of this.
  • Vertical disintegration.
  • Speed and acceleration in communication technologies, work, and social life. Global simultaneity and time-space compression.
  • Global standardization in various areas, including production and products, places, laws and agreements, norms and values. Related questions of cultural imperialism and out-dating.
  • Global connectedness and the emergence of the network-society. Consequences of transnational connectedness in respect to power and powerlessness, global governance, and transnational social and economic integration.
  • The neo-liberal turn.
  • Women and globalization.
  • New ways of organizing businesses and organizations. Important changes with regard to production and employment conditions in a globalized economy.
  • Global mobility, transnational migration, tourists and refugees, diasporas and transnational micro-economies.
  • Social complexity and cultural mixing. Differences between multi-cultural and multi-ethnic societies, creolization and hybridity.
  • Risk and vulnerability in an interconnected world, including climate change, terrorism, industrial and natural disasters. Vulnerability in transport- and digital networks. Fear and decreasing confidence in established expert-systems.
  • Reactions, global protest movements, and reembedding. Identity politics, construction of social boundaries, and the importance of the local and particular in an age of globalization.

Computer-based tools
No specified computer-based tools are required.

Learning process and workload

The course consists of 36 hours, divided into classroom teaching, project work and supervising. The content of the course is theory-based.

Activity Hours
Preparation for lectures
Exercises and group work
Colloquia and peer tutoring
Self-study/reading literature/exam preparations
Total recommended workload

    A 72-hour home examination on a given topic concludes the course. The examination can be taken individually or in groups of maximum 3 students.
    Examination code(s)
    ELE 37491 - 72-hour home-examination, counts 100% towards the grade in the course ELE 3749 Globalization, 7.5 credits.

    Examination support materials
    All examination support materials allowed.

    Re-sit examination
    For electives re-sit is normally offered at the next scheduled course. If an elective is discontinued or is not initiated in the semester it is offered, re-sit will be offered in the electives ordinary semester.

    Additional information