THE CHANGING NEW WORLD ORDER AFTER COVID-19
The world has been ruled under certain ideological practices that shaped our future for more than three decades, and from various viewpoints, these effective notions and systems have been described as the New World Order. Although the New World Order has been at the top of all systems, with the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), there had been prominent changes in the current status-quo. By studying the consequences of the virus outbreak, this paper will attempt to review significant changes worldwide after the coronavirus within different contexts, in efforts to bring a clear understanding of the changing world systems.
The world has been changing non-stop throughout the history of humankind, trying to keep up with the differences humans brought with themselves. Ever since humans made changes that could be titled as milestones, the world has reflected the changes creating a domino effect. Some of these changes were social, some economical, and some were greater than the rest to an extend that can include many aspects of change at once.
Just before the world was turning its face towards the 21st century, we have seen a change that could be highlighted as a milestone. The end of the world wars and the following, the collapse of the Soviet Union have started a new era of the emerging sentiments of particular western values. The change in the course of history made it inevitable for the world to reflect the change, creating a new world with a new order.
At about three decades later, a sudden, even so-called unexpected virus outbreak shocked the world, reminding that the world is destined to have milestones of change, regardless of any new world order. Considering the importance and the uniqueness of today's modern challenge COVID-19, in this paper, I will try to bring more meaning to the changing New World Order by listing various aspects of the virus pandemic
The New World Order has been used frequently since the end of the Cold War. This term owes its popularity to multiple factors, from its historical meaning to its relativeness to the modern world. It is necessary to look at the historical background of the era this term was first coined to understand the original meaning of the term the New World Order.
Cold War Era, which started in 1947 and lasted until 1991, had specific elements that shaped both the western and eastern world. The most significant components of the Cold War were, without a doubt, the ideological developments and their conflicts as well as the arms race between the U.S. and Soviet Union. The conflict between the west, which had capitalist and liberalist ideologies, against the Soviet World, which was closed and weakening, eventually resulted in the great victory of the west. The bipolar world immediately evolved into a unipolar one, changing more than the polarity of the world.
This victory of the west also meant the triumph of the western ideologies, which showed itself in many forms. From political means to economic means, we have seen an immense promotion of these western ideologies, which were underlined by Francis Fukuyama as the end of history we have known. These ideologies were mainly capitalism, neoliberalism, and of course, democracy.
Thanks to the infrastructure that these ideologies prepared, the New World Order was established and had absolute hegemony for more than three decades. This growing hegemony that was developed from western values created a world where countries were divided into three categories as the first world, the second world, and the third world, building a New World Order that can decide which country belongs to which class.
During this time, the term the New World Order was widely used, especially among liberal scholars and politicians. This political usage of the word around this time also first coined the contemporary meaning of the New World Order; therefore, this term has the meaning of the collapse of communism, globalization, and internationalization. New World Order signifies the open world economy, the multilateral diplomacy, and the unipolar world system where the balance of power is fundamental.
The fruits of the New World Order are mostly today's international relations, the founding of the United Nations, which had its root in the League of Nations. The U.S. hegemony and the creation of various international, intergovernmental, and even non-governmental organizations secured the desired post-cold war western values.
Politically the New World Order was used mostly during and after the world wars. According to the author of The United States of Paranoia, Jesse Walker, after WW1, the term was originated in the League of Nations. (Crocker, 2017). Later on, we have seen that the term was used by world leaders such as George W. Bush, Gorbachev, and even Hitler (Li Xing, 2014). The term gained more influence; thus, various people from different backgrounds with diverse purposes used the term for their arguments. For instance, nowadays, there is also the conspiracy side of the term New World Order.
Overall, the idea of the New World Order continued to move further. The world has become more interdependent, strengthening the globalization concept and going forward, creating political stability between powerful states and forming close relations, where there are deep cross-cultural relations. In the new world, there is sophisticated communication, there is the advanced free trade, and there are strong international relations.
The topic of global change is not exceptional to the COVID-19 virus outbreak. The global transformation has always been there throughout history in various ways and on distinctive levels; nevertheless, it has never been evolving this widely and steadily. The major shifts in the world on a global scale usually occurred after the World Wars, defeating one side while allowing the other to rise.
When it comes to defining global change, it is not simple to come up with one absolute definition. Global change is a concept with multiple definitions. The reason for this is that the change is understood separately from different perspectives. Unique events that take place in different parts of the world, of course, do not mean the same to everyone. Notwithstanding, there may be some common points when global progress is followed.
In this section, I would like to name some of these common points. For instance, the discussions of the New World Order after the Cold War era have caused systems such as capitalism, liberalism, and democracy to become more effective in the world under the global change, and the voicing of this new understanding with different parties collectively gave this understanding a global meaning.
It is noteworthy to recognize the industrial revolutions to better understand the global changes of today. Going back in time, before the industrial revolution began mass production, people were producing goods by hand. The invention of the steam engine in the 18th century has resulted in greater supply chains, which in the end caused more demands both in terms of goods and also a necessity in development.
In 1984, the Industrial Revolution has started in England, which also marked the beginning of this new trend of mass production. This era has started the industrial process called industry 1.0, and in the following periods, it has reached the period of today's 4th Industrial Revolution through electrical mass production, and then automation of manufacturing. For this reason, during our era of Industry 4.0, it is possible to see that cyber-physical systems and digitalism are at the center.
Following this period, we observed major changes and elevations in the world, especially in terms of industrial evolution and technology in the 21st century. New political approaches, social and economic metamorphosis, security threats, and worldviews have emerged.
Inventions during each era have made it possible to start a chain reaction where there are efforts to discover more; hence, today, when we look at the Industry 4.0, we see a wide range of new fields that have been introduced to the world agenda. The global change peaked and brought autonomous robots, big data, simulations, system integration, augmented reality, cybersecurity, additive manufacturing, cloud computing, internet of things, and many many more. The more the technological advancements were displayed to the globe, the quicker it changed, alongside with new issues.
Besides the industrial revolution, technological progress, wars, and thriving ideologies, there had been indicators that the world was not the planet it has used to be. Such global changes created a domino effect, changing further, also in a destructive way. These adverse changes can be listed as climate change, shortages, inequality, civil wars, poverty, famine, pandemics, and countless old and new problems, perhaps more complicated within the new world and amidst modern societies.
Since each one of these queries also gets advanced on their own, even seemingly oldfashioned issues can demonstrate huge consequences. The latest and most popular example of this statement was the COVID-19 virus pandemic, which was not the first pandemic the world has seen, yet it was the first pandemic of the year 2019. The new, nowadays is also related to the moment we are living in since the changes are too quick and drastic, the scope of new gets shortened every single time.
The novel coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, has been one of the main struggles for the world since December 2019. The name corona comes from Latin language meaning crown since the shape of the virus reminds spikes. COVID-19 stands for CO corona, VI virus, and D disease, and 19 the year it came out 2019. This virus has spread with ease due to fast global interactions and international connectedness; therefore, it created a worldwide panic causing a lot of changes.
The spread of the virus has been quite controversial, yet it was first spotted in China; thus, it was said to be originated in China. On this topic, there are many rumors about how the virus might have started, yet most of the claims are conspiracy theories. About the origin of the virus, so far, the most concrete possibility is that the virus was spread from a seafood market in Wuhan. The reason for this claim comes from the fact that the consumption of wild animals has been there in most Chinese communities.
The virus was said to be spread from a bat even though it has never been confirmed. What was confirmed is that the virus circulates within animals certain animals and can get transmitted to humans from these animals. Two previous examples for these transmissions are SARS-COV in 2003 from a civet cat and MERS-COV in 2012 from a camel. After it was found that the virus could also be transmitted among humans, it became a necessity to take the required actions which consisted of strict policies around the world as well as new approaches to our day to day lives.
COVID-19 had a huge impact on a wide variety of sectors around the globe. Especially due to its outcomes in the economic sector, we have seen concerns over a great economic recession, the first prominent crisis after the 2007-8 crisis as OECD predicted. This novel virus epidemic caused a global change where new questions have emerged as well. These questions mainly focused on the economic, diplomatic, social, political, and digital aspects of the evolving world as well as the changes in global systems.
Considering how the consequences of this virus outbreak differ from country to country and from one aspect to another, it is necessary to interpret these trends under subtopics, which can help to bring more detail to the situations.
COVID-19 is first, and foremost a virus outbreak that has resulted in a pandemic. According to the World Health Organization (2020), when an epidemic becomes worldwide or it spreads over international borders to a rather broad sphere, causing masses of people to be affected, it is entitled to be defined as a pandemic. The number of coronavirus cases is changing constantly; consequently, it is not possible to say how many cases are there exactly; nevertheless, it is well known that there had been more than 4 million cases confirmed worldwide. The numbers are followed by more than 1 million cases recovered, and at about 292 thousand deaths.
In this case, with coronavirus, the confirmed cases do not always portray reality. There are not enough testing kits for everyone, and not every affected person shows the symptoms right away. The seriousness of the infection range has challenged healthcare systems worldwide due to the complexity of the outbreak.
This novel virus proved the world that countries were not ready for such an outbreak. We have seen the hampering medical support from the governments, where there were shortages of medical supplies and a lack of medical services. Since not every country took strict measures against the virus immediately or not every nation took the situation seriously at the beginning, the situation has escalated to a state of emergency.
This new pandemic era forced countries to reevaluate their healthcare systems. Specifically, countries like the United States were criticized the most due to the overwhelming crisis of inadequacy of medical support from the government, which is ironic since the U.S. was reported to be one of the leading countries in healthcare spendings (Council on Foreign Relations, 2020). Countries like Italy and Spain also suffered extensively after the outbreak, showing signs of failure of crisis management as well as errors in their health care systems.
COVID-19 reminded most of the world that healthcare systems should be renovated and required reforms should be implemented. In this matter, there had been efforts to improve healthcare systems. For example, the World Health Organization has announced the policy over strengthening the healthcare system as a response to the coronavirus pandemic.
The severe drops in world economies have been at the heart of the concerns over the novel coronavirus. As a result of the steady global change to fight with the virus, countries have taken steps to slow down human interaction, which has caused such decisions like closing shops, canceling flights, removing social activities which are requiring social gatherings, closing borders, and so on. Once these activities which are running the economy started to sink, the concerns about the global economy started to float.
With the outbreak, especially sectors like tourism, real estate, retailing, aviation, and the automotive industry have been suffering. Many countries closed their borders to slow down the virus spread, and many people canceled their travel plans. Physical stores started to lose their importance, gyms got closed as well as restaurants, entertainment events such as concerts have been canceled, and especially public places like shopping malls have been emptied.
Federal Reserve estimated that the number of workers that might be laid-off due to the virus outbreak is more or less 66 million; moreover, the number of jobless people has a risk to rise over 47 million in the U.S. if things get worse (Cox, 2020). Reuters (2020), publishes that the United Nations' agency The International Labour Organization stated that depending on varying scenarios, the global rate of unemployed people might increase between 5.3 million to 24.7 million.
These estimations and expectations are indicators that COVID-19 could become an unemployment crisis as well as a global economic crisis. The dropping growth rates around the world have already hinted at the negative consequences over the economies of countries. Since the global economies have been more integrated than ever, this also means, that interdependency between states thanks to globalization might damage the leading economies worldwide concerning the whole world meanwhile.
Even though this phenomenon of closing workplaces and decreasing employment are giving the signals of setbacks in the global economy, companies and investors are looking for ways to adapt to the changing world. It should be noted that a disadvantage for one can be an advantage for others, which was the case during the virus outbreak as well. As the global economies were falling apart, sectors like entertainment and online commerce or healthcare providers have been the winners.
Companies like Netflix, Amazon, Google, YouTube, Zoom, Disney Plus, and Twitch were repeatedly the most benefited ones providing digital services for people online. These services were not used for the first time, yet they were never been this essential either. Considering these changes in the global economy, it can be said that the virus outbreak has been altering the understanding of commerce to a new level and forcing states to change their economic strategies.
Political consequences of the novel coronavirus can only be perceived properly after reviewing the outcomes of the virus from a wider perspective. The coronavirus pandemic has changed a lot in the world, also adjusting the public opinion over the current situation. Particularly in developing countries, where the economy is hit by the pandemic and the healthcare system is failing, the perceptions over the governments and authorities have changed, which was responded by governments with new appearances on the way they operate.
Many governments started to appear more assertive and authoritarian, which could unleash oppressive policies over the people. This kind of possibility has been raising arrows over political instability, giving the individual-state relations a new turn. Since the isolation hasn't been only for individuals, states have been isolating themselves as well. There are major outcomes of this isolation, such as the disappearing interests over multilateral diplomacy, the lack of trust, the fading cooperation between states that secured interdependence and peace.
An example of these changes would be the growing tensions in the European Union, where 28 countries enjoyed the long-lasting peace for at least 70 years. The nationalistic leader of Hungary, Victor Orban, was criticized greatly for gradually weakening democracy in Hungary over the years by interfering in the judiciary, in media, and undermining the liberal values of the EU. Today, since the virus outbreak, we saw the Orban government inserting its full presence for the long run presidential aims (Hockenos, 2020).
The first crisis which was the migration crisis in 2015 allowed him to increase his stand, and now another crisis makes it likely that he would insert more power to gain futhern influence. Right-wing political parties around Europe are not so different than the Orban government. These political entities are trying to make the best out of the crisis, causing deformation in the already questioned and exhausted European Union.
Political changes around the world could be interpreted in many ways. It is both a challenge and a chance for dictatorships as well as democracies. It is usually more manageable for developed countries to secure their democracies; whereas, in struggling countries, there is even a risk to become a failed state. Seeing police and military getting more involved with the control of the virus pandemic, it gives negative vibes that people are frequently being monitored even without their approval.
The expectation of nations around the world is clear. People want security, and states are entitled to provide it in many forms. Here strict and authoritarian governments seem to control the virus outbreak better; therefore, even when citizens are not willing to give up their freedom, crisis times force call for emergency, slowly adapting people to the shifting policies and political tendencies.
Since to management of the crisis became the priority in many places, the questioning of executive power might get neglected favoring authoritarian, populist, non-democratic governments. Besides, there had been failures in countries like Iran and Italy, where even political personalities have been infected, which causes overwhelming political debates and unrest.
The effects of the novel coronavirus over society are distinctive. People have been globalized over the years, becoming more and more attached to the outside world, were all of a sudden completely isolated, practicing social distancing; however, one should ask the question whether people actually get socially distanced or not.
Physically, people were repeatedly advised, and in some cases, forced to practice social distancing; nonetheless, they were socially active in the digital world, carrying the societies over the internet. This unexpected situation encouraged every person regardless of their ages and interests to use what the digital world offers. From this standpoint, one can argue that COVID-19 was the most powerful tool to fasten the digitalization phase, giving no other chance than building up the digital society.
One of the main downsides of the virus outbreak was the feeling of fear. This growing sentiment has slowly turned into a feeling of suspicion and hatred. People started to feel distrust against others and the governments, causing society to become more skeptical and offensive. These negative sentiments evolve into xenophobia, racism, discrimination.
As in real life, online life also had its divisions. The diverse communities online have been using the new society to preach their opinions, crossing the red lines of cohesion and global solidarity. At this point, we have seen a huge flow of hate online, showing itself with racism, hate speech, digital crimes, fake news, false flags, conspiracy theories, and countless attempts to break online adherence.
These immediate changes also caused the atomization of people, separating societies from fundamental social practices such as going to places of worship, political and educational meetings, and any physical activities practiced as a physical community. These changes in social life are depicted as the evanescence of traditional societies. Even psychologically, the more people are being individualized, the more the idea of the society has changed. The society we knew where communities were represented over individuals has been under threat, and COVID-19 just grew the threat.
As I have already underlined globalization as one of the components of the New World Order, it is safe to say that it has been an example of the driving forces of internationalization and cooperation between countries. We have seen a tremendous trend of globalization all across the world, making it possible in one way for another for each state and individual to interact with this system. To understand whether the globalist world order is shifting or not, one has to first comprehend what exactly globalization means.
Like many other terms, globalization has more than one definition; moreover, these definitions cover multiple aspects of international relations. Globalization in terms of trade and culture might differ; nevertheless, there is a common pattern. Globalization usually refers to the system that serves the interdependence among states as well as cooperation on a higher level and a larger scale.
Globalization usually starts when there is free international trade with no or less prominent international boundaries. Free trade allows countries to globalize; furthermore, it gives countries a chance to remove the artificial borders to some extend. Once the borders are more and more open, there are fewer factors that can hamper the improving cross-border collaboration. It also fastens the flow of goods, services, and people among states, which increases the interdependence between one another.
When countries lean towards globalizing policies, it also alters the political perspective of countries. The political and social outcomes of globalization are, mostly, the following democratic approaches, liberalism, internationalization, and acceptance of multiculturalism, as well as differences within the society. In the long run, the trend of globalization reaches its branches to various areas, getting more and more substantial. In particular, nowadays, we can see the developing branches of globalization in digitalism.
Since the virus outbreak, we have seen a prominent turn in globalization. Countries following more protectionist policies resulted in a decrease in internationalization between states and nations. Closing their borders to one another, we have seen such cases where unions such as the EU were weakening. An eye-catching example of this notion would be the division between southern and northern Europe. This kind of division was also seen during the Euro crisis; however, the consequences of the coronavirus were relatively more destructive.
The fast-growing numbers of new cases in Europe have begun the individualistic political approaches by European countries. These more state-oriented policies questioned the EU's supranational influence. For example, since the number of infected people skyrocketed in many EU countries, the lack of medical supplies hit countries, causing a new dependency situation. To help and increase its soft power in Europe, we have seen China sending masks and medical equipment to the required countries; nonetheless, in this picture, the missing actor was the European Union itself.
Dating back to its very core value, the supranationality of the European Union was more or less replaced by protectionist and nationalistic sentiments. There had been numerous news about the situation where even masks going to certain countries were being pirated by other states. Simos (2020), reports that Italy had captured at least two thousand respirators with medical supplies that were supposed to go to Greece. The same author also reminds that French authorities also took control of trucks that were going to the UK, carrying at about 130,000 FFP3 face masks.
The French attitude here goes against what France has alleged the U.S. with, which was that the U.S. was seizing medical pieces of equipment sent to France. A news article that was published on CNN (2020) reported that France describes the situation as the "guerre des masques" which is translated into "war of the masks". Moreover, it was not only France that pointed out the behavior of the United States.
Another news about the U.S. on the medical supplies from The Guardian (2020) was similar to the French allegations. The news article said that German authorities spotted the U.S. hijacking 200,000 N95 masks, which were ordered by the Berlin police. This situation was named as "modern piracy" by German authorities and questioned the trans-Atlantic partnership between these countries.
These methods to obtain medical supplies have brought a lot of negative sentiments among states. The Trump administration was heavily criticized since these situations were against the understanding of international free trade as well as the ideology of global solidarity and foremost against the western alliance.
This growing message of America first, Britain first, France first, etc. have replaced the internationalized globalized world that is working in cooperation, with a world where there are nationalism and survival of the fittest practiced. These changing individualistic policies of states have been weakening the major products of the globalization phase, which are the international, intergovernmental, non-governmental organizations as well as multinational enterprises and unions.
The more protectionist and nationalistic the countries have become, the worse it got for the international institutions. During the virus outbreak, we have seen that the role of specific international organizations to be criticized the most, such as the United Nations (UN), European Union (EU), North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), and World Health Organization (WHO). The fact that these organizations were being questioned also opened new opportunity doors for countries like China and Turkey to insert their soft power by providing basic medical supplies, which were not granted by whom these countries looked up to.
These developments in international relations have extra value considering that the message the United Nations (UN) sent after the virus outbreak was "global solidarity". This motto of global solidarity was adopted as a resolution in the General Assembly of the UN, inviting countries to cooperate and to help each other. Yuruk (2020) describes the resolution as the first resolution after the COVID-19 pandemic increased its infection range to more than a million globally.
The point of the UN resolution was obviously to encourage states to assist weak countries, which have high numbers of coronavirus cases. Besides, the decision reminded the racism factor since a lot of Asian people were discriminated against due to where the virus originated. Despite the message United Nations declared, many states followed their interests. World Trade Organization stated that at about eighty countries made it official about either restricting or even banning the exportation of masks and medical equipment as well as numerous types of goods (Shalal, 2020).
Considering the shifting policies worldwide, criticisms over global cooperation is inevitable. These changes in international relations should be taken into deliberation when trying to analyze the outcomes of COVID-19; nonetheless, these changes do not constitute a threat to globalization as a whole. States are in one way or another obliged to reconstitute the globalization phase, and the reason for this argument is simply the fact that ambitious countries are aiming to become more dominant and visible in global affairs.
Globalization has been the fueling power for these aspiring states to become economically flourished. Especially, fast forward growing and emerging countries are profoundly dependent on globalization. Also, one cannot imagine developed countries without strong economic ties either. In one way or another, the reality of the globalist world we are used to is required to be the continuous system. This matter makes it apparent that globalization will remain even after the virus outbreak; furthermore, the actual question one should tackle here is the adaption of globalization to the new world.
To see the effects and changes of the COVID-19 pandemic more clearly, diplomatic relations among other countries should be examined. Looking at the situation from the perspective of international relations, the benefits of diplomacy have always been at the forefront. In this framework, the coronavirus changes the direction of diplomacy and has turned the usual order of globalization into a system where bilateral relations take the lead.
There are new micro and macro transformations around the world, also affecting the diplomatic relations between states. Since China claimed to be the first country to control the virus outbreak, we have seen the Chinese attempts to expand its diplomatic attraction. China has been sending foreign aid to more than 80 countries in efforts to display China as the winner of the virus outbreak (CGTN, 2020). Also, China seems to be playing a more multilateral role, while the U.S. seems to be more bilateral focused. These shifts in diplomacy change the soft power actor, altering the balance of power.
The nationalistic responses from the U.S. created a picture of more cooperating China replacing the U.S. in the UN. Xi Jinping making peaceful and rational discourses that seems to fall under the category of global solidarity call of the UN, while the Trump government seems to be using a questionable diplomatic language. This pandemic opened the way for governments to practice diplomatic approaches against the globalist world order, henceforth, urged diplomatic channels worldwide to consider changes in the diplomatic systems.
Coronavirus and the crisis it is bringing to the world stage is not a crisis that can be solved with bilateral relations, and this factor has been remarked by the notion of a reformation in the UN. The possible reforms within the UN have been a relevant notion that was bugging the permanent members of the Security Council for a while, and now with the coronavirus, more countries could propose their demands of reform.
In April 2008, then general secretary-general of the UN, Ban Ki-moon declared that there was a need for a reformation in the United Nations with the proposal of “common understanding that UN reform was needed" (Tucker, 2009). The more the world will get bipolar and multipolar with time, the more the emerging states will demand renovations within the UN. Since there is an imbalance of representation of the different regions of the world, the UN has been facing a "reform or retire" kind of approach to the UN.
The world is unfolding from the unipolar world system to a bipolar system where there is the Chinese rivalry against the United States. China's authoritarian regime doesn't make China attractive for a more prominent role in the world stage; thus, many concerns over the formation of the new balance of power have emerged. China remarks its return within many systems and sectors, causing states to wake up against the awakening of the yellow dragon.
When it comes to China's new role in the global affairs, China has been quite active in improving its soft power, by giving foreign aid to many countries, which was criticized by the President of the U.S. Donald Trump, with the words "Chinese debt policy". These Chinese policies of foreign aid continued with the coronavirus in various sectors.
For instance, while the U.S. was accused of seizing medical supplies sent to numerous countries, China was the county that was playing the role of provider. Besides, Anadolu Agency (2020), reported that China has donated $30 million to WHO, and Hua Chunying, who is a Chinese Foreign Ministry official, stated on twitter, that supporting WHO is supporting Multilateralism and Global Solidarity. It is clear that China wants to play a global role by leveraging its international influence, yet China has bigger problems within its territory and region.
Due to conflicts in the East and the South China Sea in the region, China is losing support from many of its neighbors; thus, it should be reminded that Chinese foreign relations within the Asia-Pacific part of the world are far from desirable, questioning how dominant China could get with its diplomacy. In addition, China is a country that is demographically inhomogenous. It is estimated by the Economist (2017) that there are 56 different ethnic groups under the Chinese government as well as hundreds of unspecified minorities. It is a strategic factor, that there are many sub-groups in China who are willing to overthrow the government and bring democracy instead.
The weak points of China are visible and being oppressively neglected by the Chinese authority; nevertheless, it should be also remembered that diplomatic power doesn't always come with soft power over the nation or neighbors, but rather with military and economic power. China has been making steady progress since the introduction of capitalism over its economy, setting two centenary goals.
As mentioned in the Xi Jinping’s propaganda book, The Governance of China, the Chinese dream is willing to prevail and bring the promised welfare to its people, and the power to its governance. Having such long-termed projects like One Belt One Road, China seems to protect its rivalry against the U.S. until it is taken back.
It could be perceived that the novel coronavirus has favored digitalization the most. The shifting priorities forced people to practice digitalization, which is the current and continuous trend. On the one hand, the digitalized world is nothing new; on the other hand, the products of digitalization have never been this essential. This is where new doors open for many people against the closed ones for many others.
We have already mentioned the losses; nevertheless, there is the other side of the story. Due to the increase of need in digital sectors, new digital portals have been opened for thousands. For instance, Amazon has hired 100,000 workers to meet the demands during the coronavirus pandemic, and it continues to hire more than 70 thousand more people (Forbes, 2020).
To predict which sectors will gain more thresholds, it is useful to monitor the investments big companies make. In 2020, one of the most striking investments over digital technologies such as cloud infrastructure was made by Alibaba, the Chinese multi-billion company (Huang, 2020). These investments are accompanied by the investments of numerous countries, suggesting that digitalization is a perpetual trend. One belt one road project of China combined with the 5G technology, the efforts to convince the public to use chips in order to integrate within the improving global digitalization.
In Sweden, thousands of people were reported to implant chips under their skin to merge with the digital world better (Euronews, 2020). These chips have many advantages, such as helping people to reach digital technologies faster and efficiently; nevertheless, the fast shift to these technologies causes communities to get defensive and apprehensive against the usage of chips.
As with any other technological integration, these new applications are too attached to the users, causing them to give up on some of their privacy. This factor makes many concerned about the implementation of these emerging technologies in daily life since once digitalization is blended within daily lives, it is almost impossible to go back.
Taking into account these new approaches when it comes to the integration of societies within the global world, it is noteworthy that this pandemic has affirmed digitalism to be the adaptation of globalization to the changing world. It was already pointed out previously, that the global changes include radical changes with technology and the innovations it brings; accordingly, this era of crisis management with the help of technology, changes the world systems, bringing digitalization at the forefront of all changes. The atomization of peoples is a proof for the developing need for more individualistic and customized digital services, and some of them have already been on the go.
It is expected that the new world will bring more digital services. A report published on Forbes in 2019, shows that these predictions existed before the virus outbreak and now pushed further by the pandemic. In the report, trends such as a digital currency in a new globalized world bank where e-commerce is leading the economic interactions (the exercises to make blockchain and cryptocurrencies popular), a revision of big data and interactive technology that allows people to be more integrated within digital globalized society, more high-speed internet with 5G technology for the faster world, the AI technologies for providing data analysis, autonomous drones within smart cities in which big companies like Tesla is working on to tackle with (newman, 2019).
Considering the circumstances, these expectations became more of a need after the virus outbreak, the opportunities have increased for these digital technologies to be realized. This result of the novel coronavirus is pointing at the changing world in terms of global digitalization; consequently, the new world order under the digitalization. Digital platforms are a whole new level of establishment of worlds. This digital world has the enormous potential over a wide range of communities, sectors, and services. From digital diplomacy to the digital society, digitalization is altering the world order completely.
In conclusion, the world after the novel coronavirus shows serious signs of the shifting world order. After the examination of various factors and aspects over COVID-19, it is obvious that there had been prominent changes in many parts of the world on different matters. When these matters are combined and analyzed, we have seen that there were new trends around the world, challenging the new world order and its main components, which are globalization, democracy, and liberalism.
The globalist system is evolving into the digital world system, democracies are appearing to be more assertive, and the lack of cooperation with protectionist policies causing states to become less liberal. These trends are being followed by the changing unipolar system with new emerging powers, gaining more influence, and having more chances to leverage their power, causing the change in the balance of power. In the end, these changes are the manifestations of the new world order, which is changing itself to adapt against the new interests.
Anadolu Agency. (2020). China to donate $30M to WHO in fight against COVID-19. Retrieved 15 May 2020, from https://www.aa.com.tr/en/asia-pacific/china-to-donate-30m-to-who-in-fight-against-covid-19/1815694
CGTN. (2020). COVID-19: China has provided emergency assistance to over 80 countries and organizations. Retrieved 14 May 2020, from https://news.cgtn.com/news/2020-03-26/COVID-19-China-provides-assistance-to-83-countries-organizations--Pauc1WnMPu/index.html
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