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Spatial Dist 1
Spatial Dist 1
Undergraduate 2

Additional Geography Flashcards






"processes that make the world, its economic system, and its socity more UNIFORM, more INTEGRATED, and more INTERDEPENDENT"


Globalization of Culture:

-leading to increased cultural homogeneity

-improved communications and transportation promote global consumer culture

-all people do not have equal access to globalization


Globalization of Consumption and Telecommunications

-Distinctive local cultural traits threatened by global diffusion of consumer culture (From MDCs to LDCs: Nike, Coke, McDonald's, Marlboro, Madonna, Toyota, Honda, Sony, etc..)

-Enhanced telecommunications (television, internet, podcasts) spreads culture. (English has become the world's "lingua franca")... though not equally distributed

(ligua franca = common language to facilitate communication)


Globalization of the Economy

-international finance

-transnational corporations

-foreign direct investment

-location of production

-tertiary sector (services such as retail, wholesale, teaching, government, medicine, law, recreation)

-office functions



Globalization and Transnational Corporations (TNCs)

-TNCs are also known as MNCs (multi-)

-most have headquarters in a developed country with other activities worldwide

-today MNCs - not countries - are the primary agents of international trade, mostly within and among themselves.

-governments accomodate MNCs (tax codes, deregulation)

-today, many MNCs are larger than some national economies of world countries. The relative size of an MNC is important to small countries whose economies are often drastically affected by the decision that a foreign global corporation makes.


Globalization of Investment

-three major command centers are New York, London, and Tokyo

-Manufacturing located in low-wage, low-cost, low-regulation countries

Three trends:

-proportion of FDI (foreign direct investment) that core countries are sending to periphery is declining; core countries investing in other core countries.

-FDI located in countries with export-led industrialization (selectivity increasing)

-Fastest growing economies have followed export-led model


Globalization of Tourism

-one of the world's fastest growing industries

-natural and cultural attractions, beaches, pleasant climate

-political stability is a must

-but profits leave the tourist site, leaving mostly low-wage jobs (waiters, cleaning services, sales clerks, etc)


Globalization and Information Technology

-knowledge workers may find employment in many places

-real-time information systems and instantaneous exchange of digital information facilitates international transactions (ie. radiologists)

-increased connectivity facilitates economic activity


Globalization vs. Local Diversity

-dynamic tension

-both local and global values can co-exist, but it isn't always easy

-homogenization of culture is a potential problem

learned way of life including beliefs, customs, traditions, social forms, material traits that constitute a distinct social tradition of a group of people

Foreign Direct Investment is investment by MNCs in factories that they operate abroad (ie Toyota assembly plants in Princeton, IN)


FDI occurs directionally from core countries such as USA, UK, Japan, and flows to host economies.

Global Specialization of Work

-Every location in the global economy plays a distinctive role based on its particular combinations of assets and weaknesses

MNCs choose locations of:

-raw material extraction (from among limited pool)

-production (factories)


-office functions



-research and development

World Development Problems

-very rich countries, extremely poor countries

-problems of the poor (clean water, adequate nutrition, health care)

-Two critical issues:

1)constraints of energy supplies threaten economic expansion

2)Enormous differences b/w rich and poor at all scales (local to global)


*Fluctuations in average world growth rates reflects international recessions, the price of oil, productivity growth (including new technologies), catastrophic natural disasters, change in government policies, and political turmoil

*Worldwide averages in growth rate mask large variations among its major regions. For the last 40 years, East Asia has been the world's most rapidly growing set of economies, followed by South Asia.



-wasteful consumer culture in developed world

-environmental challenges in LDCs





-world economy generates tremendous variation in well-being

-african, asia, latin america are poorest

-disparities within developed countries


*Look at figure 1.9... "The Cycle of Poverty in Less Developed Countries"

-Low per capita income leads to low savings and low investment in human and physical capital which results in low productivity, unemployment and low per capita income.

Four Major Questions of the World Economy

1)What should be produced, at what scale of output, and with what mix of inputs?

2)How should factors be combined? Labor, capital, resource factors, etc.

3)Where should production occur?

4)Who should get the output? How should it be divided?


*Answers to these questions will identify the type of economic system.

Political Economies


-market decides... producer market/consumer market

WHAT=profitable products

HOW=based on labor and tech efficiency

WHERE= Most efficient location

WHO benefits?= producers/consumers/middle class


Circular flows= This flow involves a resource market where households supply resources to businesses and where businesses provide money to households. It also includes a product market where businesses manufacture and produce goods and services for households.



-central government

WHAT=gov decides... few consumer goods

HOW= gov decides

WHERE= gov decides

WHO benefits? = even out benefits; few rich, few poor



-feudalism, nomadism, tribal groups

WHAT= culure, habit, customs

HOW= social convention, kinship, customs

WHERE= wherever people are; rural areas

WHO benefits= landowners benefit most

Geographic Perspectives

-Anything that happens on the earth's surface is geographic

-where something occurs shapes how it occurs


-Geography is the study of how the earth's surface is used and why it is used as it is.

-How societies and their landscapes are intertwined

-spatial scale matters

Economic Geography

Economic Geography is concerned with the spatial (geographical) organization and distribution of

1)economic activities (production, transportation, communication, consumption)

2)the use of the world's resrouces

3)the grographic structure and expansion of the world economy

Macro-theoretical Approaches to Economic Geography


Emphasizes scientific method to analyze economic landscapes

-linked to rise of computers, statistics

-Location theory (location decision by entrepreneurs based neo-classical economics: homo economics)


-emphasizes form at the expense of process

-ignores historical context, class, gender, ethnicity, struggle, power, and conflict

-Fails to capture the richness of political and social life



-challenge simplistic view of economic behaviour

-idenify the complex ways that people perceive and acquire and cognitively interpret spatial information

-Introduce imperfect information, uncertainty, suboptimal behaviour, and greater realism



Draw from philosophical tradition of phenomenology (the view that life can be best understood through individual experiences and meanings)


-human resources and wants are specific to difference societies and cultures

-understanding intentions and motives, ideologies, and worldviews is important

-economic landscapes are made by people, NOT impersonal social forces



Many influenced by Marxism

Economic landscapes are the products of changing social relationships of power and wealth that organize space in historical distinctive forms

-it is crucial to understand the political organization of society and space

-power and wealther are fundamental influences on the organization of space (geography) and are unequally distributed



Believe that the capitalism is as much "cultural" as it is "economic" and "political" (all arbitrary distinctions).

The economy must be embeded within a culture

-consumption is just as important as production

-there is no singler, objective, unbiased view of the world, only multiple partial perspectives (each view is tied to different power interests, and the dominant world views are those of the powerful)


"killing economic geography with a "cultural turn" overdose"



-a reviving interest in location theory

World Economy

Capitalist, a multistate economic system, begun in 1500s along with colonialism

-an interdependent network of people and industries linked in a dynamic system of resource distribution, wealth creation, and power structures

-It's constantly transformed by a combination of technological and geopolitical forces (transport and communications reduce cost, declining role of government, rise of global capital markets)

-This combination is creating a globilization of culture (spread by TV, music), economy (spread by MNCs), and environment (spread by forces of nature).


As world economy expanded, it developed a core of dominant, developed countries and a periphery of dominated LDCs


first world: MDCs aligned with US, high standard of living, large middle class

second world: USSR and E. Europe (concept now obsolete)

third world: Southern hemisphere, dominated, less developed (LDC more accurate), were non-aligned during cold war.


International economic system of world economy includes institutions and relations of global capitalism

-flows of resource, capital, products, and labor is shapd by states "the international economic system is also a political system"

-At any given time, the world economy is dominated by one or more core states

---rise and fall of hegemonies during colonial period

---rise of institutions such as World Band, IMF, WTO, OPEC, to address interests of core countries after WWII

Political Economies

CAPITALIST: Market decides... producer/consumer market

What: Profitable products

How: Based on labor and tech efficiency

Where: Most efficient location

Who Benefits: Producers/Consumers/Middle Class


COMMAND: central gov't

What: Gov decides... few consumer goods

How: gov decides

Where: gov decides

Who Benefits: Even out, few rich and few poor


TRADITIONAL: feudalism/Nomadism/Tribal groups

What: culture/habit/customs

How: social convention, kinship, customs

Where: Where people are; rural areas

Who Benefits: Landowners

Circuler Flows in a Capitalist Economy

This flow involves a resource market where households supply resources to businesses and where businesses provide money to households.

It also includes a product market where businesses manufacture and produce goods and services for households.

The importance of Historical Processes

-The present economic landscape can only be understood as the result of a historical process.


-Decisions to site production facilities "yesterday" produce the spatial pattern that is the foundation for trade and patterns of consumption today


-We can visualize these proceses at various grographic scales

What is Capitalism?

Capitalism is the dominant form of production and consumption in the world today.


Def: The social (economic) system in which markets and production for profit are the primary (but not the only) means of organizing resources.

-ownership is a key characteristic

-importance of markets varies over time and space

-there are many forms of capitalism

Feudalism and the Birth of Capitalism

In history, resources were organized from hunting and gathering to domesticated agriculture (animals and crops)

-Slave-based empires (ie. Roman) and their feudal successors (ca. 5th century)


Feudalism: A form of economic and social relations that extended in Europe to ca. 15th century

(settlement in NA did not succeed feudalism, but was capitalist in character from the outset.



-Tradition shaped life and work

---Static and stable but changes occurred at the end of feudalism

-In Europe the church was the dominant political and ideological institution

-Aristocratic land-owners formed the ruling class, who extracted rents from tenant farmers (often serfs) in low productivity agriculture

-Feudal cities were often fortified, with guilds and markets, and where universities were established

-A hierarchy of feudal towns, mostly small trading centers, with negligible interregional trade


-farm productivity improved, there was a gradual increase in the urban population

-Bubonic plague killed 1/4 of Europeans in 4 years, creating a labor shortage

---legal system faded, allowing serfs to run away

---capitalist systems (banks) were already emerging

Market Types

markets: buyers and sellers of goods and services at agreed upon prices



monopsony: one seller, one buyer

monopoly: one seller, many buyers (high barrier to entry)

oligopsony: a few sellers and a few buyers

oligopoly: a few sellers and many buyers

monopolistic competition: limited quantity of selers and many buyers

perfect competition: many sellers and many buyers



-homogeneous products

-each producer makes a small share of output

-no one seller influences prices

-entry to market is easy

-flow of information is perfect, eliminating excess profit

-markets are fluid



-unique produce

-one poducer makes all of the product

-prices set to maximize profit

-high barriers to entry

-monopolist is able to control the market

-market is rigid



-similar products

-several sellers divide the market

-prices set through pricing strategies

-high barriers to entry

-aligopolists engage in strategic behavior- competitive or collusive

-market may be unstable

-competitive strategies to create stability: product differentiation, advertising, industry agreements

Caracteristics of Early Capitalism

Capitalism is also a political system, and its emergence saw numerous political changes: Rise of Nation-State

nation: group of people who share a common culture, language, history, territory, identity

state: land, people, government, transportation, and communication system; economic system; sovereignty, recognition

nation-state: where political and national boundaries coincide


Capitalism came long before the rise of the nation-state; not necessarily and causal relationship.

The turbulence in Europe after the French Revolution of 1789 saw the nation-state emerge as the primary entity on the continent.

Industrial Revolution

Industrial Revolution occurred long after capitalism began

Industrialization as a process with multiple transformations in inputs, output, and technologies. It is driven by harnessing inanimate sources of energy: water/wood/coal/petroleum and gas... each had spatial outcomes


Technological innovation helped reduce costs and increase revenues.


Waves of industrialization went from UK to France, and later in Germany and Italy

On a global scale, the Industrial Revolution bagan in England, then spread to continental Europe, then to North America and Japan (1870s) and reached Russia in the 1920s


FIG2.19... Cycles of industrialization. Kondratiev long waves of economic activity are associated with advances in technology

Wave 1: Steam power, cotton textiles, iron (1800)

Wave 2: Railways, iron/steel (1850)

Wave 3: Electricity, chemicals, automobiles (~1900)

Wave 4: Electronics, synthetic materials, petro-chemicals (~1975)

Wave 5: IT and producer services



-Creation of an industrial working class

---rise of organized labor

-Urbanization (industry as "city-forming" activity

---cities as centers of capital and labor

-Population Effects

---Malthus' warning vs productivity increases, population grew; life expectancy increased; death rates declines; nuclear family grew in importance

-Growth of Global Markets and International trade

---transport improvement, international finance, timing of development

Colonialism: Capitalism on a World Scale

Colonialism: The exploitation of foreign resources by European industrializing nations

-Simultaneous economic political, and cultural impacts rife with conflicts with native groups


Wave1: around 410 years from ~1400 to ~1800. Dominated by Spain and Portugal, 147 colonies.


Then.... Napoleonic Wars, American Revolution, Latin American Independence


Wave2: around 140 years from ~1800 to ~1950

-British and French dominated exploitation of Africa, Asia, and the Middle East

-Ended with post WWII collapse



-Technological and military advantages coincident with the industrial revolution

-Jared Diamond's arguments re: geographical accidents, such as the impact of diseases on local populations, and the timing of technological achievements

-political strengths due to the Western logal and economic system and property rights

-The historiography of Conquest: note the cases are historically and geographically specific (pg 54-60)



-Spain, then US in Philippines

-France in indochina

-UK in Burma and Malaysia

-Dutch in Indonesia

Effects of Colonialism/End of Colonialism


-annihilation of indigenous peoples

-restructuring around primary economic sectors

-formation of dual societies

---co-optation of native elites (often ethnic minorities) exacerbated rivalries (ie. Hutu/Tutsi in Rwanda)

-Polarized geographies

---colonial port cities became dominant

---transport networks met needs of colonizers, not indigenous peoples

-Transplantation of the nation-state

---colonial powers created states (Iraq, Afghanistan, etc) with no respect for indigenous cultures

-Cultural Westernization


-Early end in Latin America (after Napolenic Wars)

-Post WWI and WWII for much of the rest of the planet

---communist gov'ts sometimes took control

---intellectuals educated in the West played a role in some places (Ghana; Ho Chi Min; India)

-Different trajectories to independence

---some independence movements were violent (Vietnam, Algeria), others were peaceful (India)

-But, even with independence, many regions in the global south remain dependent upon the global north for commodity markets, captured in the core-periphery model

Resources and Population

The constant specter of Malthus' warning (Haiti)

-carrying capacity and overpopulation

-resource optimists vs. pessimists


Growth-oriented lifestyle with balance-oriented lifestyle

-patterns of growth with benefits to all, not just elites

-carrying capacity under particular technology


Alternatives to the current Western energy and material intensive production systems based on:

-(1)sun-based organic agriculture

-(2)renewable energy sources

-(3)greater reliance on local raw materials and labor intensive technologies

-(4)decentralized production to increase local self-reliance and reduce transport activity

Resources and Reserves


-biological or physical substances used under specific technological and socioeconomic conditions

-nonrenewable resources cannot be used without depletion

-renewable resources yield output indefinitely without impairing their productivity



-resources that are known and available for economic exploitation and price


projected reserves:

-estimates of the quantities likely to be added to reserves because of discoveries and changes in prices and technologies

Food Resources

Food production rose faster than population since 1950

Globally, food production has kept pace with population

-Africa with major food supply problems; elsewhere problems of equity in food supply distributions and nutritional quality (obesity)


Population growth IS a cause of food shortages.

Other causes:


-maldistribution of food

-civil unrest and war

-environmental decline

-gov't policy and debt



1)Expanding Cultivated Areas (21%)

-theoretically about 2X current area, but major environmental issues (desertification, deforestation, related climate change)

2)Raising Productivity of Existing Cropland (55% increased yields + 13% greater cropping intensity)

-green revolution; inequitable pattern

3)Other Facots (11% aquaculture, development of high-protein cereals, more efficient use of certain foods)

-concerns about genetically engineered seed stocks

-how to institutionalize more sustainable agriculture

Nonrenewable Mineral Resources

The widespread distribution of nonmetallic elements (ie sand and gravel, nitrogen, potash, phosphorous, sulfur, etc)


Location and Projected Reserves of Key Minerals

-strategic minerals: minerals demed critical to economic and military well-being

-Australia, Canaa, S Africa, US, Russia have significant amounts of 6 strategic minerals

-most key minerals will be depleted within 100 years


US extremely dependent on imports (though consumption of lead, tin, iron ore per unit GDP has declined from 1930 to 2000 due to increased efficiency)



Commercial energy is the lifeblood of modern economies


Energy Production and Consumption

-most commercial energy from nonrenewable

-energy surplus countries are rare (Saudi, Mexico, Iran, Venezuela, Indonesia, Algeria, Kuwait, Iraq, Libya, Qatar, Nigeria, UAE)

-heavy per capita energy users are US, Can, Norway, Sweden, Japan, Australia, NZ

-LDCs have 80% of world population and use 30% energy

-The US has 5% of earth's people and uses 25% energy



Production of Fossil Fuels

-over 65% of world's oil reserves are in the Middle East, followed by Latin America

-Petroleum is unevenly distributed


Adequacy ofFossil Fuels

-Industrialization of developing countries (especially China and India) increases demand

-Depletion of proved reserves (oil 40 years, Ngas 60 years, Coal 300 years)

Oil Production and Consumption in US

Stage 1: Till 1970, US production matched consumption

Stage 2: 70-73 lack of new oil discoveries, causing rise in imports

Stage 3: 70s-80s Alaskan production came online; high prices increased production, reduced consumption

Stage 4:after 1980, oil prices declined because of decline of OPEC's power and consumption rose again


**look at figure 4.13


There is a global imbalance in energy demand and supply


Pressures to increase domestic output- Alaska, offshore

Natural Gas and Coal


-becoming more attractive due to political volatility of world petroleum supply

-lots in Russia, Iran, Europe



-most abundant fossil fuel, consumed where found

Problems: pollution; mining difficult and dangerous; bulky and expensive to transport; not appropriate for mobile energy users (ie cars)


-reserves in US, Russia, China, India, Germany, Australia, Ukraine

-lots in developed world

Energy Options

Conservation: People naturally conserve when prices rise


Nuclear Energy:

-mostly in developped countries

fission- splits large uranium atoms to produce energy

-accidents TMI 1979, Chernobyl 1986

-Storage of spent fuel is a problem

fusion- combines smaller atoms to release energy (like sun)

-not commercially viable



-uses underground hot springs for heating and to generate electricity

-New Zealand gets 10% of energy from it

Environmental Degradation

Pollution (air and water)

Wildlife and Habitat Preservation

Environmental Equity



Dscharge of waste gases and chemicals into air, land, water

-may be hazardous to plants, animals, humans

-comprises quality of environment


Air Pollution

-Thermal inversions trap pollution, creating smog (ie LA, Mexico City)

-Global Warming is a concern

Sources of air pollutants: Industrial processes produce particulates; transport and fuel combustion produce most of the other types of pollution


*The worst acid rain is found downwind from industrial polluters

-When sulfur is released into the atmosphere from the burning of coal and oil, it combines with moisture in a chemical reaction to make acid rain

Environment Summary

Resource Problems can be solved by:

1)Changing societal goals

2)changing consumption patterns

3)changing technology

4)altering population levels


Viewing the "food crisis" as socially constructed


Nonrenewable resrouces- shifting from a growth-oriented to a balance oriented lifestyle

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