“Assembling for Development…” and “Globalization: capitalism and its alternatives”, by Leslie Sklair

First published in 1989, this book focuses upon the phenomenon of export-led industrialisation fuelled by foreign investment and technology. He concentrates on Mexico, where US companies have been taking advantage of inexpensive labour to establish “maquila” factories that assemble US parts for export. Through this detailed study of the maquila industry, Sklair charts the progress from the political imperialism of colonial days to the economic imperialism of today.

The book is the result of his research In the 1980s he carried out field research on the developmental impacts of foreign investment in Ireland, Egypt and (more intensively) China and Mexico. These works provided the material basis for Sociology of the Global System (published 1991, second updated edition in 1995, translated into Portuguese, Spanish, Japanese, Persian and Korean). A third edition completely revised and updated, of this book, Globalization: capitalism and its alternatives, was published by OUP in 2002, and Portuguese, Arabic and Chinese translations are forthcoming. His book The Transnational Capitalist Class (2001) is now in Chinese.

In this book, Leslie Sklair focuses on alternatives to global capitalism, arguing strongly that there are other futures that retain and encourage the positive aspects of globalization, whilst identifying what is wrong with capitalism. The book continues to offer a concise and illuminating treatment of globalization for all students and academics in understanding how the global system works.* Updated and refocused to consider global capitalism within the context of alternative futures, which encourage the positive aspects of globalization and identify the negative aspects of capitalism* The negative aspects of capitalist globalization are explored in a new critique and the class polarization crisis and the crisis of ecological unsustainability are considered* The book also presents a new analysis of a long-term alternative to global capitalism: the globalization of human rights* Very accessibly written, this book deals with a huge subject in a concise and illuminating way for a student readership.

Bellow are the content of this book. I´m particularly interested in the 8. Capitalist Globalization in Communist and Postcommunist Societies

1. Introduction

2. Thinking about the Global

3. From Development to Globalization

4. Transnational Corporations and Capitalist Globalization

5. Transnational Practices: Corporations, Class, and Consumerism

6. Transnational Practices in the Third World

7. The Culture-Ideology of Consumerism

8. Capitalist Globalization in Communist and Postcommunist Societies

9. Capitalist Globalization in China

10. Challenges to Capitalist Globalization

11. From Capitalist to Socialist Globalization through the Transformation of Human RightsIndex

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What is the TTIP (Transatlantic Trade Investment Partnership)?

The pro-TTIP version:

The anti-TTIP version:

Max Lock Centre at University of Westminster

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Judging by the research projects they carry out on urban studies as well as their approach, I find this research centre very interesting. I hope to follow them up. Find bellow the general description from their website:

The Max Lock Centre is an international development research and consultancy group based in the Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment at the University of Westminster.

We focus on international sustainable development in all parts of the world, including: public policy and professional practice in urban and regional planning, poverty reduction, management and governance in the built environment, community empowerment and building resilience and the creation of sustainable livelihoods at neighbourhood, city and regional levels.

The Max Lock Centre is committed to the principle of ‘Planning by People’. Drawing on the concepts of civic diagnosis, community participation and sustainable development, the Centre continues the tradition of multi-disciplinary grassroots planning, developed over the last 50 years by the Max Lock Group both in the UK and overseas.

Growth and home size trends

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Homes are getting bigger and bigger. Interesting analysis of American homes size trends between 1975 and 2013, as well as interesting reflections on the consequences in terms of social inequality:

America’s bloated house size is a two-sided problem. For one, it’s yet another indicator of the nation’s deepening economic divide. The wealthy are pouring more and more money into trophy homes, while the professional and knowledge classes, too, are demanding more space for family and media rooms. The poor, meanwhile, are crammed into urban quarters or pushed out to older, dilapidated housing in the suburbs.

and lack of growth and economic opportunities:

For another, it funnels precious capital that could be used to invest in skills and technology and to build up our economic assets into unnecessary, energy-gorging homes. That leads to a mere illusion of economic progress, what urban economist Paul Gottlieb aptly dubbed “growth without growth.”

World Bank App for development-related data on mobile platforms

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The “Spatial Agent” Mobile App has been developed to take advantage of new capabilities to visualize this growing range of spatial and temporal development-related data on mobile platforms. The App demonstrates a simple but extremely powerful approach to visualize a range of public-domain spatial datasets through interactive maps and charts to allow for data visualization at different scales and ranges. The approach literally puts the globe in the users hands and allows one to access a burgeoning group of public-domain multi-sectoral datasets (including at global, regional, and national levels) being developed for use by various development-related institutions and governments across the world. So whether you are interested in water resources or climate change, disaster management or general development, this is a must-have App for you! The simplicity of use and wealth of information is sure to appeal to you – whether you are a student, development professional, or a Minister!    Read more

 

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Transnational secondary data on mobility and transport in Europe

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The European Commission has published for the first time a scoreboard on transport infrastructure ranking the EU’s 28 member states. Secondary data on a wide number of indicators can be consulted. The Commission used data from Eurostat, the European Environment Agency, the World Bank and the OECD to come up with the scores. The online tool can be broken down my mode of transport (road, rail, waterborne, air) or by categories including infrastructure, adherence with EU law, logistics, access to market and environmental impact. Scoreboard can only offer a snapshot, but it gives a point of reference and a good source to inspire research on mobility and transport.