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The triumph of globalization at the expense of minority discriminations? – An empirical investigation on 76 countries, 1970 – 2005

Vadlamannati, Krishna Chaitanya (2008): The triumph of globalization at the expense of minority discriminations? – An empirical investigation on 76 countries, 1970 – 2005.

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Abstract

The relationship between globalization and minorities’ discrimination remains highly controversial in political economy framework. The neoliberal theorists argue that globalization lead to growth and development which in turn generates respect for basic human rights and thereby lowering discrimination against minorities. While skeptics contend that globalization process always tends to be ‘exclusive of poor’ and increases inequality leading to social unrest and economic insecurity. This leads to a preconceived notion of threat to their survival by the minorities who perceive themselves as the losers from globalization policies. These negative perceptions are often used to mobilize and show their dissent and opposition to the neoliberal policies, allowing governments to resort to repressive measures. We unpack the arguments taking the perspectives of both sides into consideration and test several dimensions of minority discriminations under the conditions of globalization.

We make use of Axel Dreher’s comprehensive measure of globalization index as a proxy for overall globalization process, followed by economic; social and political globalization indices capturing not only economic dimension, but also political and social dimensions of globalization, which is often ignored in previous studies. Using the sample of 76 countries for the period 1970 – 2005, our findings reveal a strong positive association between globalization and decline in two forms of minority discriminations viz., economic and political discriminations. In contrast to the arguments of dependency school of thought, we also find positive relationship between economic; social and political globalization and decline in both forms of discriminations. Of particular interest is the finding that these results are reiterated for a sample of low-income countries.

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