Questioning Geopolitics: Political Projects in a Changing World-System

By Georgi M. Derluguian; Scott L. Greer | Go to book overview

world system position. Research attention to these issues--changes in the composition of trade, the social structures at the international level that organize and routinize trading, and the participants in global trade--all point to new contingencies that will reshape the value of social capital and its impact on nation status and prosperity. The political and policy consequences of such research are vivid in contemporary press accounts and policy discussion about issues as disparate as contested membership in the WTO, IMF funding criteria and debt- forgiveness schemes, emerging conventions that guide global capital flows, the integration of new economic enterprise zones, and the cultural redefinition of trade activity by international experts. These are some research opportunities that deepen our understanding of linkages between structure of trade, economic outcomes, and nation status in the emerging twenty-first century world-system.


NOTES
1.
Portions of this chapter are excerpts and selections from an article forthcoming in American Behavioral Scientist. We gratefully acknowledge grants in support of our work from the Center for International and Comparative Studies, the Institute for Policy Research, the Department of Sociology, and the Department of Organizational Behavior, all at Northwestern University. We thank Cindy Aitken and Michelle Nattziger for editorial assistance.
2.
A structural hole does not imply the complete absence of a relationship between two actors. Rather, a third party can serve as a broker between two moderately connected actors by forming a stronger tie with each actor than they have with one another.
3.
We benefit from the generosity of David Smith and Douglas White, who have made available for us the dataset they analyzed in Smith and White ( 1992).
4.
This is important in assessing the competitiveness of the network, as a network with a high oligopoly measure is one where a few players have a high amount of control within the network. This oligopoly measure is often described using a concentration ratio, which describes a nation's freedom in their network as measured by the extent to which they are central and not easily replaced by another contact. Specifically, this is operationalized as the extent to which a proportion of all network exchanges comes from a limited number of sources within the network. The fewer the sources and the higher the degree to which a resource is concentrated in these few sources, the higher the concentration measure.

APPENDIX 1: COMMODITY BUNDLES WITH SPECIFIC
COMMODITIES
SITC CodeHigh Technology & Heavy Manufacture
46Machinery-nonelectrical
35Artificial resins, plastics, cellulose esters and ethers
45Manufactures of metal, not elsewhere specified

-47-

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