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Word Count: 577
One of the most important challenges facing the world in the twenty-first century is associated with globalization Once distant regions are now increasingly linked together through commerce communications and travel Many observers argue that globalization is the most fundamental reorganization of the planets socioeconomic structure since the Industrial Revolution While few dispute the widespread changes brought about by globalization not everyone agrees on the implications or whether the benefits outweigh the costs Globalization is defined as the increasing interconnectedness of people and places through converging processes of economic political and cultural change In other words many countries and nations are starting to become similar to each other from various aspects Although economic activities may be the prime mover behind globalization the consequences are far ranging and affect aspects of land and life in the new millenium Cultural patterns political arrangements and social development are all undergoing profound change Additionally because natural resources are now global commodities the planets physical environment is also implicated Local ecosystems are impacted and altered by financial decisions made in places thousands of miles away and the cumulative effect of these far-ranging activities has profound and possibly detrimental implications for the worlds climates oceans waterways and forests Rowntree 5 Globalization has been having a prominent affect on the worlds citizens from an economical standpoint For instance since the globalization of the world economy is evidently creating greater inequity between rich and poor the trickle-down model of developmental benefits for all people in all regions has yet to be demonstrated Evidence for this comes from the fact that the percentage of poor people in most world regions is actually increasing not decreasing A recent United Nations report notes that in terms of social conditions 60 countries are worse off than 30 years ago wwwusiporg At a global scale the richest 20 percent of the worlds population consumes 86 percent of the worlds resources while the poorest 80 percent uses only 14 percent
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