Glocalization (a portmanteau of globalization and localization) is the adaptation of international products around the particularities of a local culture in which they are sold. The process allows integration of local markets into world markets.
The term first appeared in a late 1980s publication of the Harvard Business Review. At a 1997 conference on "Globalization and Indigenous Culture," sociologist Roland Robertson stated that glocalization "means the simultaneity --- the co-presence --- of both universalizing and particularizing tendencies."
McDonald's restaurants' menus adopted the practice and customized its menus to suit local tastes in various countries. This phenomenon is the relative inverse of Americanization and the suppressing of local preferences in favor of providing goods and media whose content has been dictated by foreign entities. Glocalization can also involve the use of culturally friendly media to encourage the acceptance of foreign products among a local audience.
Variety of uses
- Individuals, households and organisations maintaining interpersonal social networks that combine extensive local and long-distance interactions.
- The declaration of a specified locality - a town, city, or state - as world territory, with responsibilities and rights on a world scale: a process that started in France in 1950 and originally called mundialization.
Glocalization is the adaptation of globally marketed products and services to local markets. Various analogical descriptions have been proposed, including an octopus and its tentacles, a node in a network of social relations, and world encirclement.
History of the concept
The concept comes from the Japanese word dochakuka, which means global localization. It originally referred to the adaptation of farming techniques to local conditions. It became a buzzword when Japanese business adopted it in the 1980s. The word stems from Manfred Lange, head of the German National Global Change Secretariat, who used "glocal" in reference to Heiner Benking's exhibit: Blackbox Nature: Rubics Cube of Ecology at an international science and policy conference.
The term entered use in the English-speaking world via Robertson in the 1990s, Canadian sociologists Keith Hampton and Barry Wellman in the late 1990s and Zygmunt Bauman. Erik Swyngedouw was another early adopter.
Challenges to Glocalization
Glocalisation works best for companies which have decentralised authority. The cost to the companies increases as they cannot standardise products and projects, different cultures have different needs and wants which is highlighted in this challenge. An example of a company succeeding in creating new products for their emerging market is McDonald's new rice meals in India and China  This shows that McDonald's has done research on and understands their new market's requirements for a successful takeaway food. This however can be very costly and time-consuming.
Although there are many challenges to globalisation when done right it has many benefits, allowing companies to reach a larger target market is just one of them. Society also benefits when globalisation occurs as an increase in market competition generally pushes the price of products down which means the consumers benefit by gaining a lower price point. This decreases the inequality gap as people who couldn't previously afford products when the market was controlled by local monopolies are able to purchase the product for cheaper.
Although globalisation has benefits to the consumer it does not always benefit the producer with newer and smaller companies struggling to keep up with the low production costs of the multi-national competitors. This results in either a higher price and loss of consumers or a lower profit margin which in turn results in less competition within the market.
Glocalization of education has been proposed in the specific areas of politics, economics, culture, teaching, information, organization, morality, spirituality, religion and "temporal" literacy.[clarification needed] The recommended approach is for local educators to consult global resources for materials and techniques and then adapt them for local use. For example, in information, it involves advancing computer and media understanding to allow students and educators to look beyond their local context.
In the media
- Cultural homogenization
- Internationalization and localization
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- Barry Wellman, "Little Boxes, Glocalization, and Networked Individualism." Pp. 11-25 in Digital Cities II, edited by Makoto Tanabe, Peter van den Besselaar, and Toru Ishida. Berlin: Springer-Verlag, 2002.
- Herod, Andrew. Scale: local and global" in Key Concepts in Geography.
- Habibul Haque Khondker, "Glocalization as Globalization: Evolution of a Sociological Concept," Bangladesh e-Journal of Sociology. Vol. 1. No. 2. July, 2004 
-  Archived September 13, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.
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- Barry Wellman and Keith Hampton, "Living Networked On and Offline" Contemporary Sociology 28, 6 (Nov, 1999): 648-54
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- Hollensen, S. (2014). Global marketing, Pearson.
- The Glocal and Global Studies, GLOCALIZATIONS 2015, Victor Roudometof (2015), Taylor & Francis 2015, doi:10.1080/14747731.2015.1016293
- Global Change exhibition (May, 1990), and the poster on local and global change  which a year later was the title for the "Local and Global Change" exhibition (1991) 
- Glocalization links markets that are geographically dispersed and culturally distinct
- “Think globally, act locally”: ‘Glocalization’ in Taiwanese Higher Education
- Glocalisation of Bulgarian fashion in 2005 by Lubomir Stoykov
- Article on OECD report
- The process of the internationalization of the firm: The glocal strategy of McDonald’s