What ultimately caused the demise and consequential break-up of the Soviet Union in 1990? What research would you conduct to understand the issue?
Max Weber: The decline of the Soviet Union was caused by Political and Economic disintegration. In 1990, the Soviet Union republics were demanding for their independence to become sovereign states where each state would do its own activities without interference from a central Government. (Kenez, 1999), asserts that the demands for independence by the republics were influenced by the reforms introduced by Gorbachev, the Prestroika and Glastnost, which allowed the citizens the freedom to criticize the Government and the freedom of speech. To understand this issue, I would look into the historical archives of the Soviet Union to establish the formation and the separation of the Union.
Durkheim: The press in conjunction with the public was allowed the freedom to speak of the ills of the Government as they were allowed into the country’s historical archives. Since the Government was exploitative and did not consider the interests of the citizens to improve the economy, the press took this opportunity to expose the ills of the Government to educate the public on the importance of their independence. This led to the weakening of the Soviet government. Lithuania was the first state to gain independence in 1990. The Soviet Union was also economically disadvantaged, as it had concentrated more of its resources in war than in economic development. To understand this issue, I would use questionnaires on the citizens to establish how they were influenced by the freedom of speech and how the press influenced them.
Spencer: The referendum held in 1991 in which 78% of the voters voted in favor of the independence of the Union’s republics, the election of Yeltsin as the president of the USSR and the failed attempted coup by the Communist party supporters in 1991 are the series of events that led to the demise of the Soviet Union. The Alma Ata Protocol led to the ultimate dissolution of the USSR. To understand this issue, I would hold inquiries with the citizens to find out why they voted against the Union and what led them to resist against the Government.
Why has industrialization declined in Europe in the last 50 years? What research would you conduct to understand this issue?
Durkheim: Most of the industries in Europe have workers who do so many tasks and have no time for invention. They are always busy doing different jobs. This leaves most of the sectors in the economy unattended to and underutilized. They are also fatigued by the different duties. This is because there is inadequate division of labor. To understand this, I would look into the labor market and analyze the ratio of the employed compared to the unemployed and the level of output by the employees who multitask.
Max Weber: Balance of trade deficit over a long period in Europe poses a challenge that makes importation impossible. Since industries in Europe cannot entirely rely on raw materials from Europe, it needs to import from other countries to increase production and improve industrialization. (Ogilvie, 1996), affirms that the goods manufactured in Europe have been declining in their share of international trade. This is because of their higher prices compared to goods and competition from other countries. This implies that exports are not adequate to facilitate a balance of trade. To understand this, I would compare the economic development of Europe and other countries.
Spenser: Europe has attained the Peak oil state, which is a state where maximum extraction of petroleum has been achieved and the country cannot produce more. This has led to the increased oil prices, which lead to the increase in costs of production. Since petroleum is needed for most of the activities in production such as transporting the raw materials and finished goods, in some instances, it is used to run engines during production, its decreases and increased prices has negatively influenced the growth of industries in Europe. To understand this, I would look into the exports and imports of Europe before and after the oil peak season.
What would you do to improve industrialization in Europe?
Durkheim: I would promote exports by providing incentives, which reduce the costs of production, and the prices of the goods produced. For instance, food-processing industries need raw materials from farmers; I would therefore provide the farmers with planting seeds, fertilizer and labor to reduce the costs of raw materials. (Rifkin, 2011), confirms that this will attract more investors into the production line as the raw materials for their industries will be cheaper. It will also reduce the market price for these goods and encourage more buyers to buy them. A decrease in the prices of exports will increase the demand for these goods in the market hence boosting exports. This will enable a balance of trade whereby Europe will be able to import more raw materials for its industries and increase industrialization.
Max Weber: I would encourage the Government to devalue their currency so that exports from Europe are made cheaper. Increasing exports will encourage more foreign investors into Europe to invest hence boosting industrialization.
Spencer: I would encourage the Government to reduce trade barriers that tend to limit Europe from trading with other countries. This can be done by reducing taxes and tariffs. This will encourage investors to invest in Europe hence improving the country’s balance of trade.
What are the advantages of division of labor, the spirit of capitalism and survival for the fittest?
Durkheim: Division of labor is an important move in promoting the output of an industry. It means that work is divided among different people depending on their areas of specialization such that one is not burdened by all the duties in the organization. It increases the quantity and quality of output, as these workers are able to work faster in coordination. The quality is improved since people are assigned duties according to their areas of specialization and output is increased since these people are used to doing a particular job hence getting familiar with the steps, they also help each other so they are not affected by fatigue. It also enhances creativity and innovation since these people are qualified in their lines of work, they may discover new methods of production that are more efficient and economical.
Max Weber: Capitalism is an economic system that advocates for private mode of property ownership and production. It encourages people to work harder and boosts the country’s economy. Since property is owned individually, people will be driven by the desire to have more wealth and so work harder. Communism, on the other hand discourages people from working since the entire community owns property and no individual has any claim on any property. Most people will rely on the hard work of a few individuals hence slowing down economic development.
Spenser: Survival of the fittest is a theory that dictates that only those who adapt to the surrounding will be able to achieve their goals and survive in the community. Those who survive know the best and the easiest ways of living. They do not rely in other peoples’ success but on what they are able to get from their hard work and determination. These do not let racial discrimination and tribalism affect their success but are able to interact freely with people from different races and tribes. It helps one grow both economically and socially.
What factors led to the colonization of African states?
The need of power and recognition among the world super powers led many European countries to scramble for African nations. These countries believed the more the colonies a country had, the stronger it was. The British, French and Spanish then strived to obtain colonies in Africa.
The demand for raw materials for their industries as industrialization was growing in European countries. These industries needed raw materials and labor, which the colonialists perceived, would be easily obtained from Africa. This made many European nations to demand for colonies in Africa.
Missionaries who wanted to spread the Gospel to Africa and perceived Africa as a backward nation that needed to be educated on the existence of God. As they went to Africa, they found nations endowed with great resources and labor. They first begun as missionaries preaching the Gospel so that the Africans without resistance could accept them and later changed their rule to colonialists. This led to the colonization of most African countries.