The "Critical Globalization Atlas" Project
The Critical Globalization Atlas (CGA) is an open multi-language internet platform. This tool intends to expose, clearly and systematically, information about corporate violations of human rights, environmental crimes and corruption issues around the world. More importantly, it will allow the listing of alternative companies, organizations and projects engaged in carrying out responsible and sustainable business.
The primary purpose of the CGA platform will be to make this type of information available to a wide spectrum of consumers all over the world. In order to address the maximum amount of users, the platform will fulfill one major decisive aspect: it will be simple to handle.
The simple use of the platform interface will be possible thanks to a clear and appealing layout. Information will be easy to access, its formulation synthesized and comprehensible for everyone. Within a few clicks, the user will be able to obtain essential information about a certain company or product category.
In order to provide this simplicity, the interface will be built around a core element: the world atlas. This will be the referential element at all stages of use. It will be through the world map that the first results of a search will be delivered: in the form of color-coded labels, each one representing a different known issue related to the chosen company or product. This will allow the user to get a first rough impression of a company’s behavior on a global scale. Furthermore the user will have the possibility to pick the spots individually to get more details about each one of the reported issues.
Besides exposing corporate misconducts, the most important goal of the platform is to show alternatives. It will allow searching for different product categories within a geographical area, i.e. a country, a region, or a town. Again, the results will be delivered through the map, now amplified to the area of interest. Details concerning the delivered fair trade and/or ecological companies or stores can again be checked by clicking the different spots on the map.
Ultimately, through this type of information, the user will be able to form a critical opinion concerning companies or product categories. This may motivate a more conscious and responsible consumption behavior. A powerful publishing tool For experts, i.e. NGO members, journalists and academics, or the concerned consumer, the CGA platform will serve as a centralized medium to publish critical information about companies and their activities. For initiators of alternative sustainable, social and environmental responsible enterprises, the platform will function as a tool to spread out information. It will allow these companies and organizations to become more popular among consumers.
The CGA platform, with its user friendly interface and centralized information data base, will be a powerful source of information for the consumer. In this sense, it represents a supplementary resource to NGO sites and many other informative web pages, which due to their large number and, in many cases, complex site structure are not manageable. Hence, it will represent a bridge between those in possession of critical knowledge and the consumers.
We believe that the Critical Globalization Atlas will substancially contribute to the development of a new global consumption awareness.