Universalisation is characterized by economic, social, cultural and political integration. A unification of the world’s economic order can be achieved through a reduction in barriers to international trade and tariffs, foreign direct investments, signing of bilateral and multilateral investment treaties, expansion of foreign exchange markets, adoption of a global currency and free and fair trade among countries.
A defining feature of globalisation, therefore, is an international industrial and financial business structure. International bodies such as the WTO (World Trade Organization), IMF (International Monetary Fund) and the WB (World Bank) are dedicated to the cause of globalisation and integration of world economies. The World Trade Organization is, for instance, a pan- governmental entity that was set up to formulate a set of rules to govern global trade and flow of capital.
The United Nations Organization (UNO) and European Union (EU) are international bodies incorporated against a global background. International disputes are resolved in an amicable manner by the agency of international bodies such as the ICJ (International Court of Justice), ICC (International Criminal Court) or ECJ (European Court of Justice). The formation of such supra-national entities is evidence of the trend of nations to move towards a world government.
UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization), UNICEF (United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund), Red Cross, Blue Cross and Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors without Borders) are a few organisations that promote international cultural understanding and humanitarianism.
Technology has been the principal impetus for globalisation. In particular, advances in information technology have dramatically transformed economic life in almost all countries of the world. The tremendous growth and advancement in technology, transport facilities and communication has greatly reduced distances between nations. Culinary homogenization, television, internet, the global media, transnational dressing habits and the use of English as a common global language have aided globalisation to a large degree.