Lionel Van Deerlin Professor of Communications and Public Policy, San Diego State University
Posted: Posted: 05/23/11
The challenge America faces in the wake of global competition is daunting.
We have lost our prowess in manufacturing, and in the provision of services like banking, accounting and insurance because computers can be found almost everywhere in the world, and any country can provide such services at a fraction of the cost, and ship it via telecommunications.
Globalization 3.0, first coined by The New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman, is here. Yes, as Friedman says, The World is Flat. Outsourcing and offshoring have entered our lexicon of new words. We are currently suffering what economists are euphemistically calling a “jobless recovery,” and our communities and schools are facing challenges not well understood by politicians, policy makers or parents.
We don’t know exactly how many jobs are lost from offshoring. But this shift of high tech service jobs will be a permanent feature of economic life in the 21st century.
While CEOs, economists and politicians are telling us that these are short-term adjustments, it is clear that the pervasive worldwide spread of the Internet, digitization and the availability of white collar skills abroad — where the labor cost alone may justify the move — mean huge cost savings for those global corporations.