Purpose – The purpose of the paper is further clarify Veblen's views on globalization with insights derived from international trade in the alternative socio-economic order envisioned in Bellamy's utopian novel Looking Backward. Design/methodology/approach – After reviewing the intellectual relationship between Veblen and Bellamy, the approach of the paper is to examine how international trade was arranged in Bellamy's utopian economy. Findings – Bellamy's envisioned system of global trade based on providing maximum supplies of goods and services needed for high standards of living for all would be very compatible with Veblen's views on globalization. Practical implications – The real world implications are the need for innovative institutional reforms to facilitate maximizing the potential gains from an ever expanding industrial system in a manner that that assures equitable distributions of the gains and adequate compensation for those negatively affected. On a practical basis, Veblen saw free trade under conditions of competitive markets as an improvement in that direction. Originality/value – The paper offers points of interest to all who recognize that economic and political institutions are constantly under pressure to change to accommodate the ever expanding and changing global industrial system.
Globalization, Industrial societies, International trade
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