Social Indicators Research

, Volume 81, Issue 1, pp 103–126 | Cite as

Does globali zation affect human well-being?



The prevailing theorizing of globalization’s influence of human well-being suggests to assess both the favorable and unfavorable outcomes. This study formulates a dialectical model, adopts a comprehensive globalization measure and uses a three-wave panel data during 1980–2000 to empirically test direct and indirect effects of global flows’ human consequences. The outcomes from random effect modeling reveal significant positive impacts of political globalization, whereas economic and social globalization do not generate favorable influences when development level and regional differences are operated as controls. The overall globalization index is found to generate expected favorable influence on an overall human development index. Within developing countries, globalization’s human influence was not as significant as in industrial countries, however. Several hypotheses about globalization’s potential negative effects through increasing societal instabilities and reducing state power and social spending are not supported in analysis. It is concluded that globalization identified by increased global flows and exchanges contributes rather than hampers progress in human welfare.


globalization human welfare state social structure panel data 


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© Springer 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of SociologyNational Taipei UniversityTaipeiTaiwan

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