The World is Flat

First posted: 16-08-2007

In his recent book “The World is Flat” Thomas L. Friedman reviews the consequences of the ever increasing capacity of the Internet. Particularly the improved communication bandwith between The USA and The Far East as well as the appetite of new Far East generations on higher education and career are in focus.

Although the book is written from a US perspective it is certainly worth while reading for anyone concerned with global development and competition.

For a European it highlights a challenge that we will have to do something about.

One of the consequences of the Flat World is the opportunity to outsource certain tasks and operations to countries with much lower salaries/cost of operation compared to Europe and the USA. However, this is for certain type of tasks/operation mainly an opportunity for English speaking countries. The outsourcing hosts in the Far East are primarily offering English speaking services.

This obviously gives English speaking countries a comparative advantage!

What are Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Finnish, German, French, Dutch, Italian etc. businesses going to do about that? I know that some German companies are exploring outsourcing opportunities in Eastern Europe. Spain have the benefit of South America (do they take advantage of that?), but what about all the smaller countries?

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