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  1. #1
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    How are bikes/transportation as a problem within the context of globalization?

    For a paper, "The purpose of this assignment is to familiarize you with a country and a major issue or problem, within the context of globalization, confronting the country. You will choose a country and look at a specific problem or issue within the context of globalization."

    I want to discuss biking, ebiking, or transportation infrastructure along its likes. I'm having some trouble putting together thesis, of what countries have the issue, and its context amidst globalization.

    If someone could suggest their thoughts, it would be helpful. Otherwise, I will take my paper in a completely different direction.

  2. #2
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    I'm wondering if your premise is workable, or if I'm reading you right.

    Globalization issues usually relate to shifts in production of goods or services and/or trade or wealth.

    Bicycle infrastructure is more of an internal issue, so, other than shifting demand for new cars and/or motor fuel, I can't see how changes in bicycle infrastructure has any impact on globalization or vice versa.

    OTOH, increased use of bicycles can have secondary issues, like helping meet greenhouse goals under the Kyoto protocols, or by reducing fuel dependency improve the trade balance of emerging countries.

    These are side issues though, so I'm back to asking how you expect to link the two ideas.
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  3. #3
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    You might be better served by examining the globalization of the private automobile. How it has impacted countries, like China and India, that had been previously served by bicycles and motor bikes. It has economic, social, environmental and cultural effects that are measurable and well documented.

    You could then fold the topic of bicycles, e-bikes and transportation infrastructure as possible solutions for local transport. Think the clichéd but accurate phrase "Think Globally, Act Locally".

    For info on organizations taking tangible steps to address global economic and transportation issues with local actions check out: http://www.worldbicyclerelief.org

  4. #4
    Senior Member Ozonation's Avatar
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    Hmmm... pretty serious question. Are you looking for something like this?

    ===========================
    The rise and decline of national habitus: Dutch cycling culture and the shaping of national similarity

    Kuipers, Giselinde. European Journal of Social Theory16.1 (Feb 2013): 17-35.

    Abstract (summary)

    Why are things different on the other side of national borders and how can this be explained sociologically? Using as its point of departure Dutch cycling culture, a paradigmatic example of non-state-led national similarity, this article explores these questions. The first section introduces Norbert Elias' concept of 'national habitus', using this notion to critique comparative sociology and argue for a more processual approach to national comparison. The second section discusses four processes that have contributed to increasing similarity within nations: growing interdependence within nations; increasing density of networks and institutions; vertical diffusion of styles and standards; and the development of national we-feelings. Together, these processes have contributed to the development of national habitus: increasing similarities within nations and increasing differences between people living in different countries. These processes reached their apex in the second half of the 20th century. The third section explores how these processes have diminished since the 1960s, leading to increasing variations within countries and growing similarities between comparable groups in different countries. Both the rise and decline of national habitus are illustrated by changes in Dutch cycling culture. Particularly important is the breakdown of trickle down as a result of the rise of the egalitarian informal ethos. This analysis poses new challenges for sociologists: first, concerning comparative research; second, concerning the diffusion of styles and standards; and, third, concerning the consequences of the decline of national habitus for social inequality, as evidenced by the growing rift between 'locals' and (bike-loving) 'cosmopolitans'.
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  5. #5
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    Globalization absolutely depends on cheap motorized transportation. If the costs of transport offset the advantages of cheap labor, then there is an incentive to build products closer to their end use. This naturally leads to a push by various capital interests to build the transportation infrastructure in such a way as to favor motorized means. Obviously, in the absence of non-commercial push-back, this will lead to cars being the default means of personal transportation and to bikes being relegated to second-class.

    I'm old. That's as far as I can stretch near that topic. Good luck.

  6. #6
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    Those are some good replies I got. Thank you all! I will examine it further, and your comments have helped a lot.

  7. #7
    Senior Member squirtdad's Avatar
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    I think your problem will be to link globalization, a problem for a country and bikes. If you were looking at it from a manufacturing point of view, you could talk about how production has moved over time from local production (us, canada, britain, frances, italy etc) South east asia and what that displacement has meant and how certain manufactures have avoided this (Brooks, custom/semi custom buiders, phil wood, chris king, paul) and at what costs.
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