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Reinvent Geodiversity

12 december 1999
Denise Pumain
Cet article est une traduction de :
Réinventer la géodiversité

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11999 is drawing to a close, and except for worries about the computer bug the countdown to 2000 appears not to be exciting millenarian fears. Let's just hope that this new date line does not have consequences like those for the unfortunate passengers shipwrecked on the island of the day before as related by Umberto Eco. From a geographical perspective the year now ending has been one of eclectic developments, but omnipresent is the growth in networks and integration on a planetary scale, as reflected in the media enthusiasm for the most obvious signs of globalization. Mergers and takeovers accelerated between what used to be known as multinationals and are now called global groups. International trade continues to expand, though recent attempts to regulate it have failed. Economic crises and conflicts occurred in the East but also elsewhere. The decade since the Berlin Wall came down presents a mixed balance sheet, marked by deepening social inequalities within our cities and our countries and between the developed countries and the rest of the world. And there is also the stream of accidents and disasters which punctuate our daily dose of news.

2Internet commerce is developing fast, the portable telephone is already everywhere, and Cybergéo has more than doubled its readers in a year. The appetites of the great conglomerates for domination and monopoly are viewed with unease. But globalization is conquering the planet less like an army on the march and more like the progress of an epidemic. It stimulates each country, region and city, each group and each individual to move forward and confront the challenge of innovation and adaptation. The convergence of behaviour and forms to greater global homogeneity and integration, assuming it is accepted, also operates through local changes and is shaped by their capacity to innovate, anticipate or copy, and by how individuals perceive their future condition. Ultimately, therefore, the reassuring prospect is of a fundamental role for personal freedom and responsibility. Geodiversity has to be continually reinvented. So need we really be frightened of globalization? For the Cybergéo editorial team the answer is no, and we wish you a happy, hopeful and prosperous crossing of this very special date line.

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Denise Pumain, « Reinvent Geodiversity », Cybergeo : European Journal of Geography [En ligne], Éditoriaux, mis en ligne le 12 décembre 1999, consulté le 26 mars 2017. URL : http://cybergeo.revues.org/7191

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Auteur

Denise Pumain

pumain@parisgeo.cnrs.fr

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© CNRS-UMR Géographie-cités 8504

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