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The Handbook of Global Science, Technology, and Innovation by Andrea Filippetti, Daniele Archibugi

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Chapter 28Globalization, Regionalization, and Technological Change

Frederick Guy

Introduction

National economies have become, over the past half century, radically more integrated. The process of international economic integration is viewed by many as being global (hence the term “globalization”). In this chapter I will argue that regional economic integration – regions here in the sense of sub-continental mega-regions, such as Europe and China – is likely to eclipse global integration in coming decades.

Before going further, it is necessary first to unpack the term “international economic integration” which, if it can be considered a single phenomenon at all, is certainly one of many distinct dimensions. A simple categorization of dimensions includes (1) trade in goods and services; (2) the organization of production processes across borders – something that requires trade, but also requires far more by way of cross-border corporate activity than simple trade does; (3) production in multiple countries by multinational corporations (MNCs), which requires international capital flows in the forms both of foreign direct investment (FDI), and eventual repatriation of profit or disinvested capital; (4) the international mobility of capital for other purposes; (5) the transmission of economically useful knowledge – scientific discoveries, new technologies, designs, business know-how – through the activities of MNCs, through migration, licensing, or simple copying, and through various ...

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