Contractor argues that the coronavirus outbreak only had temporary effects on the global economy, and that post COVID-19 globalization will resume. We posit that the pandemic will have significant long-lasting effects on globalization. Our arguments are grounded in three observations. First, the pandemic has increased inter- and intra-country inequalities and has reversed trends in poverty reduction, which will intensify anti-globalization sentiments in the future. Second, the pandemic has fueled populism, nationalism, and the return of the interventionist state in the economy, which has paved the way for a rise in protectionism. Third, governmental responses to the COVID-19 crisis have undermined the multilateral institutions that have thus far facilitated globalization. These forces have resulted in growing global uncertainty and higher costs in international transactions. We argue that global value chains’ reconfiguration will result in a less globalized, and more regionally fragmented world economy. We conclude by suggesting two fertile opportunities for international business scholars: researching commitment failure in international transactions and studying resilience, as illustrative examples of lines of inquiry that can help explain why this latest pandemic will compromise trends in globalization that have dominated the world economy for a long time.

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Journal of International Business Studies
Incae Business School

Ciravegna, L, & Michailova, S. (2021). Why the world economy needs, but will not get, more globalization in the post-COVID-19 decade. Journal of International Business Studies. doi:10.1057/s41267-021-00467-6