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2017/2018  BA-BEOKV1005U  Understanding Globalization

English Title
Understanding Globalization

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Elective
Level Bachelor
Duration One Semester
Start time of the course Autumn, Spring
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Max. participants 45
Study board
Study Board for BA in English and Organisational Communication
Course coordinator
  • Alex Klinge - Department of Management, Society and Communication (MSC)
  • Spencer Shaw - Department of Management, Society and Communication (MSC)
Main academic disciplines
  • Globalization and international business
  • Intercultural studies
  • Language
Last updated on 20-02-2017

Relevant links

Learning objectives
To achieve the grade 12, students should meet the following learning objectives with no or only minor mistakes or errors:
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the modern global business environment
  • Understand theories in terms of international management and organizations
  • Feel comfortable applying modern concepts to international business situations
  • Assess communication strategies in cross-border dealings
  • Evaluate communication media and global dialogue
Course prerequisites
The course is open to undergraduate students. Entry level for non-native English speakers minimum B2 (intermediate level).
Understanding Globalization:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Individual exam
Size of written product Max. 5 pages
Exam format should be according to CBS guidelines. Bibliography and References not included in 5 pages
Assignment type Written assignment
Duration 72 hours to prepare
Grading scale 7-step scale
Examiner(s) One internal examiner
Exam period Winter and Summer
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
Description of the exam procedure

The exam question will be uploaded after course completion. Students then have 72-hours to write the exam and deliver it.

Course content and structure

International business communication lies at the heart of business enterprise. The concept of Globalization reflects this enlargement of world communication, as well as the horizons of business concerns. In this respect, there is a need to evaluate the impact of Globalization on organizations, networks and transnational activity. Thoughts on the ‘global village’ and cosmopolitanism have changed the traditional approach to cultures based on outmoded, fixed stereotypes, and forced the business community to reconsider traditional marketing and communication strategy.

In light of these developments, the course analyses the Globalization phenomenon from both a theoretical and practical viewpoint. It starts from a wide perspective and then focuses on specific issues to illustrate how the modern approach has impacted traditional models.


The first part of the course (lessons 1 – 4) examines the pros and cons of Globalization in terms of national identity versus cosmopolitanism. This looks at the advantages and pitfalls of Globalization and what businesses today need to consider in terms of society and culture. It looks at business expansion across national borders and the movement of people and knowledge. On the one hand, Globalization has been seen as a natural outgrowth of Capitalism, an important way to extend trade and a prime factor in bringing people and nations harmoniously together. It has been seen as a resource in reducing poverty, gender inequality and freeing up business markets. On the other hand, it has also been seen as an unwelcome trend which intensifies wealth inequality, accentuates the global reach of powerful conglomerates, and hastens the deterioration of the world’s environment. This creates a ‘global consciousness’ which conflicts with the economic reality of many poorer, third world countries.

We analyse these contrasting viewpoints and find a rational way through the contradictory maze.


In order to understand the implications of these arguments, the second part of the course focuses on specific issues within the Globalization discussion. These issues have particular relevance to modern business studies.

Week 5 begins with an evaluation of the status of so-called democratic institutions which influence the world economy, such as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. This is looked at in terms of capital flow and competition.

Weeks 6 – 8 look at international communication. In particular, network connections and the reality of cross-border communication are put in perspective in terms of dialogue and international interaction, Attention is also paid here to the desirability, or otherwise, of English as the business lingua franca and its consequences for minority languages.

Weeks 9 – 10 look at the impact of visual communication which disseminates knowledge and information across borders. This especially focuses on international advertising and the impact of electronic media on community thinking and consumer attitudes

Teaching methods
There is a close reading of theoretical texts connected to Globalisation over the last 15 years. Modern case studies will also be used to show how students can judge whether to emphasise domestic marketing or if there is a need to reach the international market.
The last phase of the course includes Case Study presentations where groups of three students will debate international marketing problems to be followed by peer feedback.
Feedback during the teaching period
Discussion occurs throughout course on current topics and issues. Class presentations are also major feedback areas where presentation topics are discussed in full by teacher and fellow students. There is also a lecturer office hours for students every Monday afternoon.
Student workload
Attending lectures 30 hours
Preparing for lectures 30 hours
Making exercises/course assignments 44 hours
Preparing for exam 82 hours
Exam 20 hours
Expected literature

Compendium, ca.200 pages are drawn from texts which include:

J. Bhagwati, In Defence of Globalization. chs. 1 and 4 (2007)
M. Korzeniewicz: Nike and the Global Athletic Footwear Industry
J. Gray: From the Great Transformation to the Global Free Market.
in Lechner and Boli: The Globalization Reader. 2000

D. Croteau and W. Hynes: The Business of Media, 2005
E. Herman and W. McChesney: The Global Media: The New Missionaries of Corporate Capitalism. 1997

S. Ehrenreich:  Meeting the Challenge: English as a Business Lingua Franca in a German Multinational Corporation: Journal of Business Communication

J.McWhorter. The Power of Babel. A history of language. 2001.,chs 3 and 7

Maurenan and Ranta, English as a Lingua Franca, 2009, ch. 6 and 10
C. Gopinath: Globalization: Ch. 7. Global Business Influences. 2008
C. Classen, and D. Howes, Cross-Cultural Consumption. (1994)

M. De Mooij. The Paradoxes in Global Marketing Communication. (2011)

T. Luke, The Political Economy of Cyberspace in Spaces of Culture (1999)

Last updated on 17-02-2015


Last updated on 20-02-2017