A clear global focus prevails as both challenges and opportunities are vigorously pursued, such as new perspectives on global markets, product offerings, organisational structures, business processes and greater mobility and flexibility of managers. Globalisation has increased interdependence and diversity and requires organisations to adapt to new competition from non-traditional sources, both locally and internationally, and operate with more regulatory reforms. On the other hand, there is a corresponding increase in localisation as expressed by regionalisation, tribalisation, fundamentalism and marginalisation as seen in the old Soviet Union and its former satellites, like the Balkans, and in Africa, the Middle East, Iraq and Afghanistan.

In extreme cases of marginalisation, the response can be terrorism. These types of activities will increase as local communities strive to maintain identities while coming under increasing pressure for uniformity from globalisation and westernisation or Americanisation, iedominantculture of privatisation and entrepreneurship. Another way to describe Americanisation is

"...America is the only country in the world that has a business culture..."

Janet Guyon, 2001

and Americans are not concerned

"...about whether they are doing the right thing about making money or about whether it's going to shorten their chances of getting into heaven..."

Janet Guyon, 2001

The challenge for developing countries is to use Western know-how to assist the development of their truly local cultures without importing Western culture, ie can Western know-how and Western culture be divorced?

The paradox of simultaneous globalisation and localisation is best expressed by

"...think globally but act locally..."

In fact, it has been stated

"...There is no such thing as a global company: companies aren't global - businesses are..."

Jack Welch as quoted by Jack Welch et al, 2001

Global risks

A resilient organisation needs to understand and to handle risks. For example, the top 25 global risks identified at the World Economic Forum on Global Risks (2006) were, ie

"... - economic, such as oil prices/energy supply; asset prices and indebtedness; US current account deficit and US dollar; coming fiscal crisis (failure and market crashes); China (integration, protectionism and dislocation); critical infrastructure (power outages, data blackouts and attacks)

- environment, such as tropical cyclones (East Asia and North Atlantic); earthquakes (Japan and California): climate change; environmental degradation and loss of ecosystem services

- societal, such as regulation (changes); corporate governance (failures); intellectual property rights (piracy, etc); organised crime (counterfeiting)

- pandemics, such as slow and chronic diseases in industrialized countries (obesity, cardiovascular, cancer, etc); developing world diseases (HIV/AIDS and TB); liability regimes (insurance capacity)

- technological, such as converging technologies (privacy issues); nanotechnology; electromagnetic fields; pervasive computing (RFID)

- geopolitical, such as international terrorism; European dislocation; current and future hotspots (general Middle East stability, Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Korea)

Most likely short-term risks with highest severity: New HIV/TB infections of 5 million people..."

Most likely long-term risks with highest severity: incidence of HIV/TB flattens in sub-Saharan Africa, but rapidly expands elsewhere; incidence of HIV/TB infections flattens, death remains high

Risks just outside the top 25 are

"...- Space weather (solar radiation)

     - Loss of biodiversity..."

as quoted by Tim Mendham, 2006


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