Globalization as Evolutionary Process

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* Book: Globalization as Evolutionary Process: Modeling Global Change. Edited ByGeorge Modelski, Tessaleno Devezas, William R. Thompson. Routledge, 2007



"The term globalization has gained widespread popularity; yet most treatments are either descriptive and/or focused on changes in economic interconnectivity. In this volume the concept is seen in broader terms as leading international experts from a range of disciplines develop a long-term analysis to address the problems of globalization.

The editors and contributors develop a framework for understanding the origins and trajectory of contemporary world trends, constructing testable and verifiable models of globalization. They demonstrate how the evolutionary approach allows us to view globalization as an enterprise of the human species as a whole focusing on the analytical problem of global change and the rules governing those changes. The emphasis is not on broad-based accounts of the course of world affairs but, selectively, on processes that reshape the social of the human species, the making of world opinion and the innovations that animate these developments.

Chapters are clustered into four foci. One emphasizes the interpretation of globalization as an explicitly evolutionary process. A second looks at historical sequences of such phenomena as population growth or imperial rise and decline as processes that can be modeled and not purely described. The third cluster examines ongoing changes in economic processes, especially information technology. A final cluster takes on some of the challenges associated with forecasting and simulating the complexities of globalization processes."



Modelling of the millenial cycle by ChatGPT:

"key elements of a hypothetical millennial learning cycle:

Early Phase:

Rise: A new power or civilization emerges, often through technological advancements, economic growth, or cultural innovation. This rising power begins to establish its influence and expand its reach.

Consolidation: The rising power continues to grow and solidify its position. It may engage in territorial expansion, establish colonies or trading networks, and develop institutions to support its dominance. Middle Phase:

Dominance: The rising power reaches its zenith and becomes the dominant force in global affairs. It wields significant economic, military, and political influence. It may control vast territories, establish a global empire, or lead international systems.

Stability or Hegemony: The dominant power maintains relative stability and may shape the international order according to its interests. It may exercise hegemonic control over trade, diplomacy, or cultural diffusion.

Late Phase:

Transition: The dominant power's position gradually weakens due to internal or external factors. Economic challenges, political shifts, technological advancements, or external pressures from rising powers may contribute to its decline.

Decline: The declining power loses its dominance, often accompanied by territorial losses, economic decline, or political instability. New powers emerge, challenging the existing order.

Transition to a New Cycle:

Power Shift: Emerging powers rise and compete for global influence. A new power or set of powers starts to assert itself, often through a combination of economic growth, technological advancements, and political ambition.

Renewal: The new rising power(s) initiate a cycle of growth and consolidation, leading to a new phase of dominance and a potential shift in the global balance of power."


Provided by ChatGPT:

"Let's compare two prominent cycles proposed by George Modelski: the Dutch Cycle and the British Cycle. These cycles highlight the rise, dominance, and decline of the Dutch Republic and the British Empire, respectively.

Dutch Cycle:

Rise: The Dutch Cycle began in the late 16th century when the Dutch Republic emerged as a dominant maritime power. It capitalized on its strategic location, innovative shipbuilding techniques, and economic prosperity through trade, particularly in spices and commodities.

Dominance: During the 17th century, the Dutch Republic reached its peak, establishing a global trading network and dominating maritime trade routes. It became a major colonial power, acquiring territories such as Dutch East Indies (present-day Indonesia) and establishing trading posts and colonies across the world.

Decline: The Dutch Republic's dominance started declining in the 18th century due to several factors. Economic challenges, military conflicts, and the rise of competing powers, notably Britain, eroded its position. The Fourth Anglo-Dutch War (1780-1784) further weakened the Dutch Republic and marked the end of its dominance.

British Cycle:

Rise: The British Cycle commenced in the late 17th century as Britain began consolidating its power and influence. The Industrial Revolution fueled its economic growth, and advancements in naval technology solidified its dominance at sea. The British Empire expanded rapidly, capturing territories and establishing colonies worldwide.

Dominance: Throughout the 18th and 19th centuries, the British Empire reached its zenith. It became the world's leading colonial and maritime power, controlling vast territories in North America, India, Africa, and the Pacific. British naval supremacy and economic prowess propelled its global dominance.

Decline: The British Empire's decline started in the early 20th century. The two World Wars significantly weakened Britain, both economically and politically. Nationalist movements, decolonization efforts, and the emergence of new global powers, such as the United States and the Soviet Union, challenged British hegemony. The process of decolonization accelerated in the mid-20th century, leading to the dismantling of the empire.

Comparing these two cycles, we can observe similarities and differences:

Both cycles experienced a period of rise, marked by economic growth, technological advancements, and expansion of territorial control.

The Dutch and British cycles were characterized by dominance over maritime trade routes and the establishment of global empires.

Both cycles eventually faced challenges and declined due to economic, military, and political factors.

The Dutch Cycle lasted approximately 150 years (late 16th century to the late 18th century), while the

British Cycle endured for about 200 years (late 17th century to the mid-20th century).

The rise of the British Empire overlapped with the decline of the Dutch Republic, indicating a transition of power between cycles."

More information


Modelski, G. (2006). Long Cycles in World Politics. University of Washington Press.

Modelski, G., & Thompson, W. R. (1988). Seapower in Global Politics, 1494-1993. University of Washington Press.

Modelski, G. (1999). Toward World Leadership: Three Dimensions of Global Power. Routledge.

Chase-Dunn, C., & Lerro, B. (2014). Social Change: Globalization from the Stone Age to the Present. Routledge. (Includes a critique of Modelski's work along with other perspectives on long-term social change.)