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Globalization (or globalisation—see spelling differences) is the process of international integration arising from the interchange of world views, products, ideas, and other aspects of culture. Put in simple terms, globalization refers to processes that increase world-wide exchanges of national and cultural resources. Advances in transportation and telecommunications infrastructure, including the rise of the Internet, are major factors in globalization, generating further interdependence of economic and cultural activities.

The term Globalization can also be referred to as the process of opening up all national economies in a globalized market. Globalization is mainly used in the economic field, but it affects all human activities: industry, services, trade, politics, social, culture, religion, transport, health ... It also concerns communication and exchanges between the entire world and different cultures so that we would all become a "global village." However, this would be very difficult to operate in a purely national market because the countries that already have a stable economic system, would not accept to make a change on their economic system. Also, very conservative countries would never want anything to change in their culture.

Humans have interacted over long distances for thousands of years. The overland Silk Road that connected Asia, Africa, and Europe is a good example of the transformative power of translocal exchange that existed in the "Old World". Philosophy, religion, language, the arts, and other aspects of culture spread and mixed as nations exchanged products and ideas. In the 15th and 16th centuries, Europeans made important discoveries in their exploration of the oceans, including the start of transatlantic travel to the "New World" of the Americas. Global movement of people, goods, and ideas expanded significantly in the following centuries. Early in the 19th century, the development of new forms of transportation (such as the steamship and railroads) and telecommunications that "compressed" time and space allowed for increasingly rapid rates of global interchange. In the 20th century, road vehicles, intermodal transport, and airlines made transportation even faster. The advent of electronic communications, most notably mobile phones and the Internet, connected billions of people in new ways by the beginning of the 21st century.

The term globalization has been in increasing use since the mid-1980s and especially since the mid-1990s. In 2000, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) identified four basic aspects of globalization: trade and transactions, capital and investment movements, migration and movement of people, and the dissemination of knowledge. Further, environmental challenges such as climate change, cross-boundary water and air pollution, and over-fishing of the ocean are linked with globalization. Globalizing processes affect and are affected by business and work organization, economics, socio-cultural resources, and the natural environment.

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Jean Baudrillard
B. 1929 – d. 2007

Jean Baudrillard was a French sociologist, philosopher, cultural theorist, political commentator, and photographer. His work is frequently associated with postmodernism and specifically post-structuralism. Baudrillard argued that the excess of signs and of meaning in late 20th century "global" society had caused (quite paradoxically) an effacement of reality. In this world, neither liberal nor Marxist utopias are any longer believed in. We live, he argued, not in a "global village", to use Marshall McLuhan's phrase, but rather in a world that is ever more easily petrified by even the smallest event. Because the "global" world operates at the level of the exchange of signs and commodities, it becomes ever more blind to symbolic acts.

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German GDP in tax havens

The ratio of German assets in tax havens in relation to the total German GDP. The "Big 7" havens shown are Hong Kong, Ireland, Lebanon, Liberia, Panama, Singapore, and Switzerland.

A 2012 report from the Tax Justice Network estimated that between US$21 trillion and $32 trillion is sheltered from taxes in unreported tax havens worldwide.

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Potential peak water curve for production of groundwater from an aquifer.[1]

Peak water is the point at which the renewable supply is forever outstripped by unquenchable demand. The term Peak Water has been put forward as a concept to help understand growing constraints on the availability, quality, and use of freshwater resources. The clearest definitions of the term were laid out in a 2010 peer-reviewed article in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. There is a vast amount of water on the planet but sustainably managed water is becoming scarce. An updated assessment was published in August 2011 in the Stockholm International Water Institute's journal. Much of the world's water in underground aquifers and in lakes behaves like a finite resource by being depleted. The phrase peak water sparks debates similar to those about peak oil. The concept has sparked such high interest that The New York Times chose the phrase "peak water" as one of their 33 "Words of the Year" for 2010.

There is concern that the state of peak water is being approached in many areas around the world. Some areas are suffering from peak renewable water, where entire renewable flows are being consumed for human use, peak non-renewable water, where groundwater aquifers are being overpumped (or contaminated) faster than nature recharges them (this example is most like the peak oil debate), and peak ecological water, where ecological and environmental constraints are overwhelming the economic benefits provided by water use. If present trends continue, 1.8 billion people will be living with absolute water scarcity by 2025, and two thirds of the world population could be subject to water stress. Ultimately, peak water is not about running out of fresh water, but about reaching physical, economic, and environmental limits on meeting human demands for water and the subsequent decline of water availability and use.

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Globalization(14 C, 41 P)
Anti-globalization movement(9 C, 20 P)
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  1. ^ Meena Palaniappan and Peter H. Gleick (2008). "The World's Water 2008-2009, Ch 1" (PDF). Pacific Institute. Retrieved 2009-01-31. 
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