Friedman considers insourcing to be flattener number eight, because it allows small companies to compete like major supply-chain companies. Insourcing refers to hiring another company to handle a company's supply chain. UPS is the major supplier for insourcing services in the United States. Friedman believes that insourcing flattens in three ways: by letting little companies compete in the global market; by dissolving barriers between companies; and by standardizing business practices across companies.
Finally, Friedman looks at a group of flatteners that he refers to as the steroids. These are small flatteners that have the effect of amplifying the other flatteners. Mobile steroids are those technologies allowing people to work in non-traditional environments and include cellular phones, laptops, and wireless internet access. Personal steroids are those things that give power to the individual, and include personal computers, search engines, and peer-to-peer file sharing. While these flatteners are not powerful enough to change the world on their own, they certainly impact how the larger flatteners can change the world.
After discussing flatteners, Friedman discusses how the flatteners converged, not only with each other but also with global social and political changes to help create modern society. All of the flatteners were important, but they may not have been able to achieve today's modern, global society if they had not occurred at the same time. Friedman refers to this combination of elements as Convergence I. Friedman thinks that the global platform is so critical that, "Wealth and power will increasingly accrue to those countries, companies, individuals, universities, and groups who get three basic things right: the infrastructure to connect with this flat-world platform, the education to get more of their people innovating on, working off of, and tapping into this platform, and, finally, the governance to get the best out of this platform and cushion its worst side effects" (2007, p. 205). Friedman believes that Convergence II is when business practices caught up with the emerging global platform, which did not occur immediately. Convergence III was based on demographics; in the 1990s several countries with large populations of young...
These countries included China and much of Central Asia, India, Russia and much of Eastern Europe, and most of Latin America, and it meant an additional 1.5 billion participants in the global economy.
In the final part of his book, Friedman discusses how globalization will impact the American economy. Friedman makes it clear that the West, particularly the United States, is losing its ability to dominate the world economy. While he does not see this loss as something inherently negative because flattening can be beneficial for so many people, he does see it as something for which Westerners need to prepare themselves. Flattening has created an environment where products, services, and labor are cheaper. This has actually resulted in middle class people having an increased buying power. However, as work continues to be sent to other countries, it also means that these same people will most likely face reduced wages and/or job opportunities. Friedman is alarmed by the complacency he sees in the West, especially in the United States, where many take economic dominance as a right. He urges Americans to realize that academic, political, and economic changes are necessary for the United States to remain vital in the emerging global economy.
Friedman does a very good job of explaining how the economy has become global and the possible impacts of that economy. At the time he wrote his book, it might have been possible to dismiss some of his concerns that the West was going to lose its economic dominance. However, since 2007, the world has undergone a tremendous recession, with several Western governments literally becoming bankrupt. Though the United States remains a major economic player in the global economy, China's emerging economic dominance cannot be ignored. In fact, it will be interesting to see if economic recovery is possible or if this economic distress that the West is currently experiencing is not really a recession, but is instead actually a reflection of the changing global economic conditions.
Friedman, T. (2007). The world is flat: a brief…
Outsourcing has shown that the quality of work does not diminish even if someone who lives at the side of the world does the work. This situation is largely dependent on the amount and quality of investment in enriching human capital in the developing world, i.e. through a more relevant curriculum, which matches the needs of the labor market. Off shoring, on the hand, works differently. Friedman noted that off
Yet Mr. Friedman does not go to this depth of analysis and relies instead of lengthy, conversational passages in the book that could be trimmed and made more potent, relevant and valuable. The concept Mr. Friedman discusses of the Untouchables is altogether too elitist as well, and this chapter of the book is an illusion; there is no job safe in a globalized world. Only those willing to compete
World is Flat" is taken from a metaphorical point-of-view to highlight the development and advancement of technology in the world. The author, Thomas Friedman, asserts that the world has become flatter because technology together with other factors has turned the world into a smaller place. The author describes the manner in which technology has made the world become more competitive and elucidates what is necessary to compete in this
NASA cannot afford to create new technology, and that is a sign of our lack of support of new science and engineering, something that could be critically short in years to come. In conclusion, there are clearly many advantages to the flat world economy that has developed with the advent of the 21st century, and Friedman does a good job of spelling out those advantages quite well. There are disadvantages,
Flat (2006), Thomas Friedman describes the new global capitalist economy and how it has affected the United States, as well as the type of skills and education that will be most in demand in the 21st Century. Even white-collar workers, managers and engineers have been doing poorly because of globalization, while unskilled and semiskilled blue-collar workers have been devastated. Construction and manufacturing workers with only a high school education
Similarly, Chapter Eight, "This Is Not a Test," is a must read for every CEO, manager and government official. In this chapter, Friedman has highlighted that "lifetime employment is a form of fat that a flat world simply cannot sustain any longer" (p. 284) (Jones, 2005). He argued for a policy of "lifetime employability," which is a kind of social agreement between government and business and the people that, in