The globalization of the production and distribution of goods and servicesA good is a tangible item that someone has made, mined, or grown. A service is a form of work, assistance, or advice that provides something of value to someone else but does not produce a tangible item. is a welcome development for many people in that it offers them access to products that they would not otherwise have. However, some are concerned that the changes brought about by globalization threaten the viability of locally made products and the people who produce them. For example, the new availability of foreign foods in a market—often at cheaper prices—can displace local farmers who have traditionally earned a living by working their small plots of family-owned land and selling their goods locally.
Globalization, of course, does more than simply increase the availability of foreign-made consumer products and disrupt traditional producers. It is also increasing international trade in cultural products and services, such as movies, music, and publications. The expansion of trade in cultural products is increasing the exposure of all societies to foreign cultures. And the exposure to foreign cultural goods frequently brings about changes in local cultures, values, and traditions. Although there is no consensus on the consequences of globalization on national cultures, many people believe that a people’s exposure to foreign culture can undermine their own cultural identity.