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Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations, Vol. 7, No. 2 & 3, Summer & Fall 2008 86 THE TURKISH PROJECT OF GLOBALIZATION AND NEW REGIONALISM* Nilgun Onder** The world is simultaneously globalizing and regionalizing. The double processes of globalization and regionalization appear to be paradoxical. This seemingly paradoxical phenomenon has raised the question of whether regionalism contradicts or complements globalization and whether it obstructs or reinforces globalization. The paradox of the resurgence of regionalism amidst globalization has attracted considerable scholarly attention. In the literature on regionalism and globalization, one can identify three main perspectives on how regionalism relates to globalization. First, there is the view of regionalism as a project of resisting globalization. This view popularly articulates regionalism as a “stumbling block” to globalization. Regionalism is a project driven by the desire of governments and domestic private interests to defend national economic and social institutions and policy instruments against the homogenizing forces of accelerated globalization through regional-level cooperation. Defensive or resistance regionalism may also be an attempt by governments to counter the negative effects of globalization, such as greater inequality and environmental degradation, through collective action on a regional scale. The second perspective conceptualizes regionalism as complementary to globalization. In this view, regionalist schemes are “stepping stones” or “building blocks” to economic globalization. They seek to facilitate better or more advantageous engagement of member countries with the processes of globalization. They serve as a platform that enables member economies to participate in the growing global flows of trade, finance and FDI as well as to improve their competitiveness in markets outside the respective region. Thus regionalism promotes or facilitates rather than obstructs globalization. One can identify a third, though less influential, perspective in the literature while the main debate has been between the first
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Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations, Vol. 7, No. 2 & 3, Summer & Fall 2008 87 and second perspectives. The third alternative perspective attributes a more pro-active agency role to national governments than do the former perspectives that conceives of regionalism as either a defensive reaction to globalization or an adaptive response to the requirements of globalizing capitalism. In the third perspective, in the contemporary era of globalization, a regionalist project can be aimed at selective, strategic integration with global markets. This type of controlled-globalizing regionalism is based on the strategy of active state role on a regional scale in order to promote member countries’ development or other politico-strategic goals in the broader world order. Whereas controlled-globalizing regionalist projects are not aimed at insulating national/regional economies from global market forces, their mode of
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This note was uploaded on 02/01/2012 for the course PHIL 101 taught by Professor Anchustegui during the Fall '11 term at Boise State.

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