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Rational exercise of our responsibility requires us to relate the globalization process to the ends and purposes that properly befit human life and human community. Economic 'ends' are merely the 'means' to ends of a higher order, which can only be specified in terms of moral duty and ethical purpose. The contributors to this book explore political-ethical issues of globalization, including terrorism, institutional change and distribution in the world economy, the role of the United Nations and international financial institutions, the regimes of international trade and technology transfer, the effects of regionalism in the European Union and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, the failure of Russia, human rights enforcement in Africa, and the prospects for global governance. This book was originally published as Volume 4 no. 3-4 (2005) of Brill's journal Perspectives on Global Development and Technology.


This chapter considers interpretations of the globalization process along a continuum ranging from "realist" emphasis upon sovereignty in the inter-state system to "idealist" projections of cosmopolitan citizenship and even global government. The work of Jürgen Habermas is taken to be the most comprehensive via media between the "extreme" positions. In The Postnational Constellation, Habermas relates morality to ethics in explaining the potential for, but also the current limitations upon, cosmopolitan projects. The example of the European Union demonstrates the possibility for politics to "catch up" with globalizing markets.

In: Perspectives on Global Development and Technology