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March 30, 2009

Globalisation & Diversity – week 6

What is a pandemic? List all of the major (global) pandemics that you can identify. What is the likelihood of a pandemic originating in your country?

A pandemic is a widespread disease, or a disease like symptom, (i.e., an epidemic) that occurs throughout a region or globally (Wordweb, 2008a), whereas an epidemic simultaneously affects or attacks a single community or population (Wordweb, 2008b).

“Epidemics and pandemics can place sudden and intense demands on health systems. They expose existing weaknesses in these systems and, in addition to their morbidity and mortality, can disrupt economic activity and development” (WHO, 2009a, ¶ 1).

Recent pandemics: 1st Cholera pandemic in 1871, 7th Cholera pandemic in 1961 (WHO, 2009b); Spanish flu in 1918 (UniNews, 2008); Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) 1981/83 (WHO, 2006).

Near pandemics: H5NI influenza A bird flu virus in 2003 (WHO, 2009c); Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) in 2003 (WHO, 2009d).

The likelihood of a pandemic originating in Australia without vigilant “preparedness, rapid response and containment” (WHO, 2006e, ¶ 1), is possible. With increased international travel the risk of an influenza pandemic increases (UniNews, 2008); indicating that no country is entirely safe from being the origin of pandemic. However, since the SARS and Bird flu virus scares in 2003, Australia is now more prepared to combat an influenza epidemic (UniNews) which would therefore reduce the risk of at least an influenza pandemic originating from Australia.

References:

UniNews. (2008). Taking the panic out of pandemic. Retrieved March 30, 2008, from University of Melbourne Voice Vol. 3, No. 9

http://uninews.unimelb.edu.au/news/5556/?menuLink=/uninews.php

WHO. (2006). The WHO Response to the HIV/AIDS Pandemic. Retrieved March 30, 2008, from World Health Organisation http://www.who.int/global_health_histories/seminars/presentation08.pdf

WHO. (2009a). Epidemic and Pandemic Alert and Response (EPR). Retrieved March 30, 2008, from World Health Organisation http://www.who.int/csr/en/

WHO. (2009b). Global epidemics and impact of cholera. Retrieved March 30, 2008, from World Health Organisation http://www.who.int/topics/cholera/impact/en/

WHO. (2009c). Avian influenza frequently asked questions. Retrieved March 30, 2008, from World Health Organisation http://www.who.int/csr/disease/avian_influenza/avian_faqs/en/

WHO. (2009d). Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) – multi-country outbreak – Update. Retrieved March 30, 2008, from World Health Organisation http://www.who.int/csr/don/2003_03_16/en/index.html

WordWeb. (2008a). pandemic. In WordWeb Online  database. Retrieved March 30, 2008, from http://www.wordwebonline.com/search.pl?w=pandemic

WordWeb. (2008b). epidemic. In WordWeb Online  database. Retrieved March 30, 2008, from http://www.wordwebonline.com/search.pl?w=epidemic

March 23, 2009

Globalisation & Diversity – week 5

Are there any points you disagree with on the affect of multinational corporations on local cultures?

It was difficult to disagree with what Deresky (n.d.) and Candir, Csabai, Egger, Fochler and Hedl (n.d.) describe as the affects multinational corporations (MNCs) have on local cultures as neither presentation specifically stated what those affects are. Rather, both presentations outlined differences between regions or countries: Regional Trading Blocs (Deresky, p. 5), specifically the European Union (pp.  6-7); and, cultural differences in power, uncertainty avoidance, individualism, masculinity and “long term vs short term orientation” (Candir et al. pp 5-12). From those differences, one can infer that MNCs should be mindful of a region’s cultural values related to their work ethic and structure to the point that “Structure should follow culture” (Candir et al. p. 24); while Deresky noted that there may be risks involved when MNCs deal with ‘less developed countries’ as well as more general political risks (p. 12; pp. 15-18).

Therefore, it could be viewed that any negative affects a MNC may have on the cultural values of the host country would be detrimental to the MNC in the long term. However, that may not stop a MNC acting as a parasite with no benefit to the host country which is ultimately harmed by the association (WordWeb, 2008).

References:

Deresky, H. (n.d.) Assessing the Environment – Political, Economic, Legal, Technological. Retrieved March 23, 2008, from https://lms.sca.ecu.edu.au/units/CMM5110/kenno2009/helen.ppt

Candir, A., Csabai, C., Egger, A., Fochler, S., & Hedl, S. (n.d.) Culture and organization of the multinational firm. Retrieved March 23, 2008, from https://lms.sca.ecu.edu.au/units/CMM5110/kenno2009/fons.ppt

WordWeb. (2008). host. In WordNet database. Princeton University.

March 16, 2009

Globalisation & Diversity – week 4

A summary of how the combination of e-learning and the necessary related technology, will impact the education of the next generations. Is this a step forward or backwards?

The combination of learning and technology to form e-learning has more recently been visioned in the form of “educational games” by the likes of Marc Prensky and Mathew Resnick. Prensky, particularly, argues that the current generation of ‘Digital Natives’ learn differently from previous generations: “Our students are no longer ‘little versions of us,’ … they are so different from us that we can no longer use either our 20th century knowledge or our training as a guide to what is best for them educationally” (Prensky, 2006, ¶ 3). The issue with designing e-learning related products lies in defining just how students best learn (Prensky, 2003) and just what it is that makes engaging learning materials ‘fun’ (Resnick, 2006).

While investigation into the application of current knowledge and research concerning learning styles with technology can be viewed as a step forward if the blend is right, poor implementations of learning objects into technology for technology’s sake as a replacement for structured classroom education at this stage would be seen as a backward step.

Prensky, M. (2003). e-Nough!. Retrieved March 1, 2008, from http://www.marcprensky.com/writing/Prensky%20-%20e-Nough%20-%20OTH%2011-1%20March%202003.pdf

Prensky, M. (2006). Listen to the Natives. Retrieved March 16, 2009, from http://www.ascd.org/authors/ed_lead/el200512_prensky.html

Resnick, M. (2006) Computer as Paintbrush: Technology, Play, and the Creative Society. Retrieved July 27, 2008, from http://llk.media.mit.edu/papers/playlearn-handout.pdf

March 12, 2009

Globalisation & Diversity – week 3

Joseph Stiglitz – three examples of ‘Anti-Globalisation’

If the tenants of ‘Globalisation’ were based upon the democratic ideals of the “The Atlantic Charter” (1941) concerning economic trade for all states and for all people on equal terms, then ‘Anti-Globalisation’ might be initially interpreted as the antithesis of those ideals. However, the Anti-Globalisation movement that Joseph Stiglitz has often been associated with is not against globalisation as such but rather against what he, and others, see as the lack of democracy in current global economics:

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March 3, 2009

Globalisation & Diversity – week 2

Response to:  Historical Components of Globalisation -
Carry out some research, and identify 3 significant issues that affected the growth of globalisation, and explain why. Pick issues that occurred before 1946…

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