Challenges of Globalisation

Challenges of Globalisation
Challenges of Globalisation
South African debates with Manuel Castells
Johan Muller; Nico Cloete and Shireen Badat

Manuel Castells is a Spanish-born political economist, sociologist and urban analyst at the University of California at Berkeley. Author of numerous publications, he is best known for his magisterial trilogy on The Information Age, a publication that finally established globalisation as the pre-eminent social phenomenon of our time. In June and July 2000, Castells together with his long time friend and intellectual collaborator Stanford political economist Martin Carnoy, visited South Africa at the invitation of the Center for Higher Education Transformation, to present a series of seminars and to engage in serious debate with South African scholars, politicians and policy makers. This book is an intellectual record of that engagement and represents the first sustained interdisciplinary engagement by South Africans with some of the consequences of globalisation.



This book, an intellectual record of a riveting dialogue between the highly acclaimed Manuel Castells and South African scholars, is an invaluable contribution to information scholarship, and an indispensable guide to issues of globalisation for the South African situation. It is a fascinating discourse, a passionate engagement with globalisation issues and a critical scrutiny of Castells' methods and conclusions.
Njabulo S Ndebele, Vice-Chancellor, University of Cape Town

Castells and his South African commentators ought to be required reading for leaders who are grappling with technological apartheid and the social exclusions linked to globalisation.

Alison Bernstein, Vice-President for Education, Media, Arts and Culture, The Ford Foundation, New York.




Manuel Castells: A brief biography

Introduction: Plugging in


Section 1: The network society

1. The new global economy

2. The role of the state in the new global economy

3. The grand sociology of Manuel Castells

4. Disputing Castellian globalisation for Africa

5. Globalisation, the state and macroeconomics

6. Black holes, or green fields of opportunity?

7. Shaping or submitting to the global economy

8. Debating Castells and Carnoy on the network society?


Section 2: The net and the self

1. Growing identity organically

2. The politics of identity in post-apartheid South Africa

3. Re-imagining, remaking or imposing identity


Section 3: Technology Development

1. Information technology and global development

2. Building Castells in the ether

3. Think local, act global


Section 4: Higher education and the network society

1. Universities as dynamic systems of contradictory functions

2. Education and the margins of the network society

3. Vanishing borders and new boundaries


Concluding comments: Connectivity, capacity and knowledge