I therefore call on the whole population in all

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I therefore call on the whole population in all Member States, in particular intellectuals, political, religious and community leaders, educators, artists and young people, to mark the Day with acts of med- itation, awareness-raising and exchange about the tragedy of slavery that we cannot forget, and that we can never again tolerate. Source: Message of the director-general of UNESCO. (August 23, 2004). Retrieved September 8, 2004, from &URL_DO=DO_TOPIC&URL_SECTION=201.html
causes of the modern revolution or, indeed, on the gen- eral causes of innovation in human history. However, widespread agreement exists on some of the more impor- tant contributing factors. Accumulated Changes of the Agrarian Era First, the modern revolution clearly built on the accumu- lated changes of the agrarian era. Slow growth during several millennia had led to incremental technological improvements in agriculture and water management, in warfare, in mining, in metalwork, and in transportation and communications. Improvements in transportation and communications—such as the development of more maneuverable ships or the ability to print with movable type—were particularly important because they increased the scale of exchanges and ensured that new technolo- gies, goods, and ideas circulated more freely. Methods of organizing large numbers of humans for warfare or tax collection also improved during the agrarian era. In ways that are not yet entirely clear, these slow technological and organizational changes, together with a steady ex- pansion in the size and scale of global markets, created the springboard for the much faster changes of the mod- ern era. During the final centuries of the agrarian era the pace of change was already increasing. International GDP grew almost sixfold between 1000 and 1820, whereas hardly any growth had occurred at all during the previous millennium. Rise of Commercial Societies Second, most historians would agree that the modern revolution is connected with the rise of more commercial societies. From the Scottish economist Adam Smith onward economists have argued that a close link exists between innovation and commercial activity. Smith argued that large markets allow increased specializa- tion, which encourages more precise and productive labor. Equally important, entrepreneurs buying and sell- ing in competitive markets faced competition of a kind that landlords and governments of the agrarian era could usually avoid.To survive, entrepreneurs had to undercut their rivals by selling and producing goods at lower prices. To do that meant trading and producing with maximum efficiency, which usually meant finding and introducing the most up-to-date technology.As commer- cial exchanges spread, so did the number of wage work- ers: people who took their own labor to market. Because they competed with others to find work, wage workers also had to worry about the cheapness and productivity of their labor.

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