Monday, August 29, 2005

Thinking About the World Being Flattened

No, not a Hurricane Katrina reference. Although that incipid Katrina and the Waves song "Walking on Sunshine" seems to be stuck in my brain today....

No, I am referring to the book The World is Flat by Thomas L. Friedland. I mentioned it in my May 2005 blog post Where Were You When You Realized the World Is Flat? (Or Have You?).

I recently finished reading this book. The first portion discusses at length the 10 factors that have contributed to the "flattening" of the world. Then it talks about the effects of flattening on the U.S. In Friedland's estimation, they are falling behind with education and taking advantage of the technologies in the workplace. For those of us not in the U.S., this part can be a little boring as many of us have perhaps already surmised this is happening. Then it goes on to discuss the effects of flattening on the third world, and does an excellent job (I think) of discussing the recent rise of terrorism. This book was written late 2004 and early 2005, and yet it manages to explain what has happened since then.

It is a book about technology and world politics. Moreover, it is an amazing look at how the advances in supply chain management have enormously affected the globe "while we were sleeping".

Much like Malcolm Gladwell's books The Tipping Point and Blink , and Jared Diamond's Guns, Germs and Steel , this book has been buzzing around in my head and has really given me something to think about. It is definitely a must-read.

1 comment:

Connie Crosby said...

What was I thinking? As I watch the ongoing devastation from the hurricane, I regret my earlier flippant remark. My apologies to anyone who found this particularly insensitive!