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January 15, 2006

India versus Indiana: Who is Exploiting Whom? - A new worldview

My most recent book review at Amazon [See all my reviews]
The World Is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-first Century by Thomas L. Friedman, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2005.

This book is a good visualization, using the lenses of experienced as well the experiences of the global citizens.
I liked one section, viz., India versus Indiana: Who is Exploiting Whom (p. 205-208). An interesting perspective to analyze what is happening, in this process of "horizontalization." I like this section as a model for a new worldview. East versus West is now an out-dated theme; First-World vs. Third, may sound odd. But, India versus Indiana is really creative and thought provoking.
[Read more from this section, Chapter four]
Also read comments on this section from bloggers: Indiana Higher Education in a Flat World, and Moods Indigo

"The World Is Flat" also adapts a term which has a socio-cultural meaning in India: This is all about the term, The untouchables. I personally felt compelled to rethink how and where do I fit in this paradigm. This term here has four categories (don't ever recall the four classes of India): special … specialized … anchored … readily adaptable ...
Read more from other Blogs on this Term
The way I like to think about this for our society as whole is that every person should figure out how to make himself or herself into an untouchable. That’s right. When the world goes flat, the caste system gets turned upside down.In India, untouchables may be the lowest social class, but in a flat world every one should want to be an untouchable. Untouchables, in my lexicon, are people whose jobs cannot be outsourced.
So who are the untouchables, and how do you or your kids get to be one? Untouchables come in four broad categories: workers who are “special,” workers who are “specialized,” workers who are “anchored,” and workers who are “really adaptable.” continued...(p.237-238)

Another goody in this book:
The ten forces that flattened the world (p, 48-224) are easy to use as benchmarks to measure the flat world. May be businesses and cooperates need this sort of criteria for a better Return-on-Investment? These "ten innovations, events, and trends that had flattened the world..." (p.57)
Friedman divides globalisation into 3 phases:
1.0 up to 1800 when things depended on states
2.0 when it was multinational corporations 1800-2000
and then
3.0 since 2000 when it has been up to brilliant individuals.

Globalization, as a subject, with these ten best practices, is very clear to every one. more from my review
Contents at a glance:
The World Is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-First Century

1 While I was sleeping 3
2 The ten forces that flattened the world 48
Flattener #1. 11/9/89
Flattener #2. 8/9/95
Flattener #3. Work flow software
Flattener #4. Open-sourcing
Flattener #5. Outsourcing
Flattener #6. Offshoring
Flattener #7. Supply-chaining
Flattener #8. Insourcing
Flattener #9. In-forming
Flattener #10. The steroids
3 The triple convergence 173
4 The great sorting out 201
5 America and free trade 225
6 The untouchables 237
7 The quiet crisis 250
8 This is not a test 276
9 The Virgin of Guadalupe 309
10 How companies cope 339
11 The unflat world 371
12 The Dell theory of conflict prevention 414
13 11/9 versus 9/11 441
$$$Price comparison: http://isbn.nu/0374292884$$$

...About Thomas L. Friedman: Thomas L. Friedman is the United States' pre-eminent foreign affairs columnist. His syndicated column is printed in hundreds of newspapers, both at home and abroad. He has won the Pulitzer Prize for commentary three times. He is articulate. He is experienced. More from Friedman's Website
~~~~Information professionals, as any others, have sufficient food for thought. I was impressed by the observations: Mike Crandal, The Information School, University of Washington - from a Travelin' Librarian

~~~~See also: Liberalisation Vs Globalisation, Counterpoint: HindustanTimes.com » Columnists » Vir Sanghvi February 18, 2006
Most of us — myself included — will agree that liberalisation is, on balance, A Good Thing. While I have problems with the innate soul-lessness of the market, I accept that it is far better to use it to allocate resources than to depend on the cozy nexus of bureaucrats, politicians and crony capitalists who dominated the old licence-permit-quota raj.
But globalisation? I have never quite bought the investment bankers’ line that you can’t have liberalisation without globalisation; look at Japan, for instance, where a capitalist society has stubbornly resisted global influences.

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