Reduce online activity, reconnect socially in the physical world, suggests UH expert | University of Hawaiʻi System News – University associated with Hawaii

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The COVID-19 pandemic is the latest in a series of multiple social crises that have impacted the particular global flow of people, things, institutions, and ideas in the opening decades of the 21st century. Many view pandemic lockdowns and social distancing as forms associated with “deglobalization” measured by the reduction of the objective movements of goods and people. A few discerning academic observers, however, instead think of it as “reglobalization” spearheaded by growing forms of digital interconnectivity.

These conflicting perspectives on globalization and global social change were shared simply by Professor Manfred Steger from the Department associated with Sociology in University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa’s College of Social Sciences . His November 15 talk, “Globalization after COVID-19, ” was the featured lecture from the Mānoa International Education Week.

Crises create “The Great Unsettling”

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Manfred Steger

Steger said that other major downturn within the early modern world include anti-trade protests from 1999–2001, post-9/11 global terrorism, the particular 2008 Global Financial Crisis followed by the Eurozone Crisis, the rise of nationalist-populism in the particular 2010s (Brexit, Trumpism, etc), the current worldwide supply chain disruptions plus inflation caused by COVID-19, and, most recently, the Russia-Ukraine War. During these tumultuous times people experience instability, insecurity, anxiety and polarization. Therefore , Steger characterized our current era associated with rapid sociable change as the “Great Unsettling. ”

The main qualities of globalization are interconnectivity, mobility and imagination. Steger pointed out that, despite the Great Disturbing, some forms of globalization—especially digitization—have continued at a rapid pace. In fact , according to Steger, even before the coronavirus pandemic, digital information plus data flows have increased much more than the movement of individuals, institutions and tradable commodities.

COVID-19 became the “Great Accelerator” associated with this worldwide wave of digitization. For example , pandemic lockdowns reduced types of connectivity in physical space, but enhanced mobility in cyberspace.

As we begin to transition into a world no longer dominated from the COVID-19 pandemic, Steger noted, all of us need the “globalization reset”—a rebalancing act aimed in reducing our online time and reconnecting physically.

“I am not suggesting we all should smash our smartphones, ” Steger clarified with a smile, “but spending an U. S. average associated with seven hours a day on electronic devices of all kinds is simply too much. We need to reacquaint ourselves with the particular human warmth of our tangible social worlds rather than capitulating to the endless prompts of social media—especially now that the pandemic is slowly subsiding. ”

To view the entire lecture, see this link .

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