The decrease of the relevance of geographical research mentioned above was provoked by the article of Ron Martin in 20012, in which he said that both of the traditions – the Marxist geography and postmodern perspectives – were just a theory and not meaningful for real life ideas. Martin considers critical geographers to improve people’s life as they work closely with political actors, for example with local community organizations, social movements, trade unions, etc. But if the government is treated as a sponsor it might expect to get what it desires, politically. Government-sponsored researches depend on the outcomes of them.
There is also a question of ownership of a research and the real possibilities for any critical engagement in policy. Consequently it is necessary to understand wh
Показать всеat government means in the current phase of globalization. What, for example, do the ideas of decentralization, transparency and accountability bandied around by the World Bank and the IMF really mean within global financial and commercial networks? How are ideas of supranational government such as the international Criminal Court and the pressure for introduction of a Tobin Tax to be reconciled with initiatives such as the GATS and the Bolkestein agreement in the EEC, which seek to incorporate laissez-faire capitalization as an integral part of the global political economy? It is hopeful that these contrasting positions will come to interaction; that critical academics will get to grips with the reality of the political economy and thus we’ll have a chance to provide effective inputs into critiquing the hegemony of neo-classical orthodoxy, re-thinking the role of the state, improving the regulation of multi-national business and reclaiming the role of supra-national international financial institutions and other regulatory bodies.
Here it will be of interest to explore more specific research area of corruption and anti-corruption.
Several years ago the need of anti-corruption campaign became obvious, especially concerning oil industry and arms trade.
Probably the negative impacts of corruption upon economic growth are overstated. Undoubtedly some corrupt behaviour has an impact upon economic growth, but cultural and political economy contexts are also vital.
Corruption is of content to critical academics from the fact that it bears negative impacts in the context of diversion of funds intended for anti-poverty programmes. Corruption can decrease support for democratic processes and create circumstances where corrupt socio-cultural processes facilitate the existence of the elite minority (in that case it is considered to be of importance) and impoverish the majority of citizens. It seems to be suspicious that today corruption is intended to be a bigger problem than it was in the past and why it was not deemed important before.3 Such anti-corruption campaign is subjected to criticism. We should accept that in a framework of democracy anti-corruption programmes won’t be effective.
The first mistake in treating corruption is to consider it to be a domestic problem and to deny its global sources. Of course there are forms of corruption whose boundaries are local, but international corruption is the first what we should pay attention to. Under such international corruption practices international institutions, aid agencies, transnational corporations are meant. And while international institutions and governments where bribery is the norm are supported and encouraged, corrupt behaviour in geo-strategic purposes such as need for oil or weapons is intended as a support for the neo-liberal model of capitalism.
We should distinguish international or world corruption and day-to-day corruption, as for instance of police officers in the streets.
In major part corruption has an economy understanding and rarely recognized in private behaviour.
During the immediate post World War II period and during movements for independence in Asia, Oceania, Africa, Latin America, markets, manufacturers and industrial goods outside Europe, the USA and USSR were under the dictate of remnant colonial administrations. Where and how a company could trade depended on administrative regimes and political processes, so that bribery was an acceptable and even necessary part. Trade regimes in US and European market differed greatly from these in what came to be termed the third world. For this last group colonial history, socio-cultural structures and external intervention helped to determine the trade regime. For both the USSR and US/NATO alliance an internal business functioned in a different manner from that of outside countries. To add to this the type of commerce determined the regulatory environment in which business operated, those which were close to strategic needs of the country were given carte blanche. Thus, during the post-war period in the UK the oil trade and the weapons industry were very essential in state policy and international treaties. So, Northern companies and their governments generated corruption in the South. The international business underwent a rapid change; capitalism was accompanied by increasing market instability, economic and social damage caused by the acceptance of corrupt behaviour.
In poorer countries the commercial environment was affected by the regulatory conditions created by IMF and the World Bank. These International Financial Institutions moved away from neutral international clearing banks with responsibility for maintaining a stable global economy towards becoming the enforcers of US-orientated capitalism. This not only affected the regulation of the global economy, but also entailed development of neutral, deterministic economic laws and processes, created a special regulatory, fiscal and macro-economic environment for business. Скрыть
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