Roland Robertson

Roland Robertson
University of Pittsburgh | Pitt · Sociology

B.Sc. (Econ.)

About

150
Publications
52,026
Reads
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13,526
Citations
Citations since 2017
10 Research Items
4840 Citations
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20172018201920202021202220230200400600800
Introduction
In addition to my Pittsburgh appointment I hold an Emeritus position at the U. of Aberdeen. My work centers upon glocalization, cultural theory, comparative religion and global sociology. Latest book is EUROPEAN GLOCALIZATION IN GLOBAL CONTEXT (Palgrave). Forthcoming, revised edition of Globalization: Social Theory and Global Culture; Global Culture: Consciousness and Connectivity; collections of essays in Turkish and Chinese.
Additional affiliations
October 2010 - December 2010
Durham University
Position
  • Distinguished research fellow
Description
  • Participated in research seminars.
September 1999 - August 2010
University of Aberdeen
Position
  • Professor (Full)
September 1973 - August 1999
University of Pittsburgh
Position
  • Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus
Description
  • Centers of Asian Studies, Latin American Studies, European Studies, Cultural Studies and Religious Studies

Publications

Publications (150)
Article
This paper is based on the question as to whether humanity is now for, rather than simply in, itself. This issue is of particular significance at this time for two major reasons. First, there is the problem of climate change and its potentially disastrous consequences. Second, there is the matter of the coronavirus Covid-19 that is presently sweepi...
Chapter
Here, it is argued that the present state of globalization analysis is increasingly marked by its glocal turn. The chapter begins with a brief summary of the author’s past, most relevant, writings and an indication of the most striking aspects of the present global condition, including a glance at extra-global phenomena. It is emphasized that atten...
Chapter
This chapter discusses some major historical antecedents of the field of global studies. It is argued that historical reflection requires a “way of thinking” that is sensitive to a holistic longue durée framework of social and intellectual development. The chapter provides a brief discussion of the place of planet Earth in the universe and connects...
Article
“Glocalization” and associated terms stand in a long tradition concerning binaries and antinomies. Moreover, and more specifically, this term can be seen as having derived in large part from the very long tradition of the discourse of territory. This entry discusses the odyssey of the concept of glocalization.
Article
With India’s robust, neo-liberal economic growth and the growing buying power of the Indian consumers, cricket, a popular sport in India, too, has been transformed. Indian Premier League is a short-format, high-value cricket league that features major international cricket stars who come to India to join one of the eight franchised teams that take...
Chapter
Consideration of global culture involves a departure from conventional treatments of culture in the social sciences. A leading problematic is the issue of the relationship between homogeneity and heterogeneity, although current thinking veers strongly toward the latter. Particular attention is paid here to images of the world, as well as to the dya...
Book
Full-text available
Despite the increasing flow of publications on globalization, our ideas and knowledge about this phenomenon still leave much to be desired. That is why the special periodicals and books in the field of Global Studies are of utmost importance for modern society. Of great importance are also the books which accumulate the last achievements of scienti...
Chapter
Carol Gluck (2009: 3) has aptly insisted that as “words change, the world changes … but the world … also has the power to change words”. She goes on to say that “words are always in motion, and as they move across space and time, they inscribe the arcs of our past and present” (Gluck, 2009: 3). Furthermore, as scholars, “what we have in common is t...
Article
In recent days, the referendum in the United Kingdom and the alleged attempted coup d’état in Turkey has placed in center stage the problem of every nation-state’s internal democracy as well as its relationship with the international dynamics that in- volve processes of integration such as those seen in the European Union. Once again, the relations...
Chapter
This chapter explores four key aspects of globalization within the context of sport: first, the historical phases; second, sociocultural issues; third, political-economic questions; and fourth, debates surrounding the emergence of a global civil society. It focuses on Robertson's six-phase historical schema of globalization, which spans the fifteen...
Article
This paper develops our prior work to examine how glocalization may be applied to examine Asian sport. We begin by discussing the different usages of glocalization in social science, and the role of Asian scholars in developing and applying the term. We set out our sociocultural understanding of glocalization, notably drawing on Robertson's work an...
Article
This paper provides a sociological model of the key transnational political and economic forces that are shaping the 'global football field'. The model draws upon, and significantly extends, the theory of the 'global field' developed previously by Robertson. The model features four quadrants, each of which contains a dominant operating principle, a...
Chapter
Cosmopolitanism is currently one of the most prominent topics in the social sciences and humanities. This has arisen largely through the work of such writers as Ulrich Beck, Robert Holton, Craig Calhoun, Gerard Delanty, Chris Rumford, Robin Cohen, Pnina Werbner, Kenneth Appiah, Seyla Benhabib, Robert Fine and Bryan Turner.
Article
This is a critical discussion of Benedict Anderson’s best selling and highly influential Imagined Communities (1983/1996). This book is located within the Marxist tradition of deliberation on the crucial topic of nationhood and nationalism, which were both regarded as highly problematic in relation to the prospects for proletarian revolution. The m...
Article
This paper considers the work of Shmuel Noah Eisenstadt mainly in the perspective of the author’s specific encounters with his work, in the course of which Eisenstadt’s work is compared with that of Talcott Parsons. There are several aspects of this programme. First, brief attention is given to the biographies of Eisenstadt and Parsons; second, the...
Article
This article notes that there has been a reaction from humanists, among others, to global developments in religion. It argues that one of the core features of the contemporary global situation as it impacts on religion is the rapidly developing tension between the widespread and disputed quest for explicitly formulated national identities on the on...
Chapter
The events in Seattle surrounding-or more accurately, opposing-the meeting of the World Trade Organization in the fall of 1999 constituted a symbolic beginning of the targeting of the global. Seattle 1999 amplified a strong switch away from the adage, "think globally, act locally." Similar protests against globalization and capitalism took place in...
Book
This timely book provides an engaging, clear view of the interrelationships within key globalization processes and the international sport of football. Intelligently combining the conceptual and methodological aspects of global studies with the specific cultural conditions of the ‘beautiful game’ Giulianotti and Robertson illuminate its social hist...
Chapter
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Article
In an age of apparently endemic globalization and globality, any form of sociological theorizing centred on an understanding of the term `society' which took the latter as being always located within the boundaries of a particular nation-state, would be indictable as being imprisoned within the confines of a naïve and analytically unsatisfactory `m...
Article
Full-text available
This article explores what is called the conceptual bundle consisting of security, alterity, transparency, and surveillance within the context of a multidimensional conception of globalization and the use of Popper's idea of the open society by students of transparency. The general argument is that the conceptual bundle should not be thought of as...
Article
Abstract The aims of this special issue are to both raise the social scientific status of sport and to advance understanding of transnational processes through the role of sport in global change. The Introduction argues that sport, like globalization, can be understood in transdisciplinary terms, and the papers included contributions informed by so...
Article
Abstract In this article, we place the social and football (as a sporting realm) at the heart of social scientific analysis of globalization processes. Our theoretical framework sets out, in turn, the concepts of glocalization, with particular reference to what we term the ‘duality of glocality’; transnationalism, notably its socio-historical aspec...
Article
Full-text available
The concept of glocalization has the potential to advance sociological understanding of globalization with reference to social agency and cultural differentiation. In this article, we develop a four-fold typology of glocalization projects, with reference to relativization, accommodation, hybridization and transformation. We illustrate and elaborate...
Article
Full-text available
In this paper we examines the globalization of football by focusing in turn on its historical, cultural, economic and political dimensions. In general terms, we emphasizes how the globalization of football highlights the continuing sociological significance of societal diversity and cultural heterogeneity in regard to global processes. We explore h...
Article
The increasing monopolization by the nation-state of personal identity is a neglected feature of contemporary societies. First, there has occurred a somewhat puzzling conjunction between the activities of the state, on the one hand, and the flourishing of intellectual concern with the issue of identity, on the other. Second, it is a prominent featu...
Article
Full-text available
In this paper we examines the globalization of football by focusing in turn on its historical, cultural, economic and political dimensions. In general terms, we emphasizes how the globalization of football highlights the continuing sociological significance of societal diversity and cultural heterogeneity in regard to global processes. We explore h...
Article
It is necessary to distinguish between civilization as a sociocultural complex on the one hand, and civilization as a process, on the other. This is illustrated by invoking the work of Norbert Elias. For Elias, the civilizing process consisted in the way in which what were, historically, constraints on human behaviour became internalized, and is a...
Article
Full-text available
The concept of glocalization is used to analyse the ways in which social actors construct meanings, identities and institutional forms within the sociological context of globalization, conceived in multidimensional terms. This article seeks to advance the sociological grasp of glocalization processes through a field-work-rooted study of particular...
Article
The ancient Greek historian and political scientist Polybius is not as well known in the present day as figures such as Herodotus, Thucydides, Plato and Aristotle. This is in part due to his having lived in the Hellenistic period, an epoch often thought to be characteristic of Greek cultural and political decline, rather than in the earlier ‘golden...
Article
‘Globalization’ has become in recent years one of the central themes of social scientific debates. Social theories of globalization may be regarded as specific academic and analytic manifestations of wider forms of ‘global consciousness’ to be found in the social world today. These are ways of thinking and perceiving which emphasize that the whole...
Article
Sport, in particular football, constitutes one of the most dynamic, sociologically illuminating domains of globalization. This paper examines the globalization of football with particular reference to Robertson's theorizations of global processes. We examine football's cultural globalization through the concept of 'glocalization', which highlights...
Article
In recent years, much has been made of the idea that under conditions of globalization, more and more people in different parts of the planet conceive of themselves as part of a ‘global society’ or ‘global culture’. Often it has been alleged that forms of consciousness centred around a disposition to see one's own life as a single part of the ‘worl...
Article
In recent sociological debates, the concept of ‘society’, understood as a delimited, bounded entity, has come under much critical scrutiny, especially as it seems increasingly inadequate as a frame of analytical reference in an age characterized by ‘global’ flows and processes beyond national boundaries. In this article, we suggest that this unders...
Chapter
Die folgende Diskussion dreht sich um die These, dass es in einer zunehmend globalisierten Welt — mehr dazu weiter unten — einen wachsenden Druck in Richtung einer Verbindung von religiösen und staatlichen Belangen gibt. Denn unter den gegenwärtigen globalen Gegebenheiten sind Nationalstaaten sowie andere „kleinere“ und „größere“ soziokulturelle Fo...
Chapter
Wie könnte man eine Analyse von Globalisierung und Fußball anders beginnen als mit der ebenso richtigen wie heutzutage banalen Feststellung, daß dieses Spiel wahrhaftig das wichtigste und populärste kulturelle Phänomen auf dieser Erde ist? Eine aktuelle Umfrage ergab, daß 250 Millionen Menschen sich aktiv am Fußball beteiligen, während rund 1,4 Mil...
Chapter
The public discussion of globalization has reached fever pitch. It is virtually impossible, for example, to read a newspaper without encountering this word. Indeed, it is used so frequently in various media that one would think it had a completely obvious meaning; in fact, it does not. When I first began to write about globalization in earnest abou...
Article
It is argued that the word `globalization' has become so fuzzy and used with such a variety of different meanings that a general theory of globalization must acknowledge and incorporate various discourses. The most prominent current usage of the term `globalization' is undoubtedly associated with the global expansion of the market form of economy....
Article
En este trabajo se señala que la globalización --en su sentido multidimensional, opuesto al recientementemente adquirido sentido unidimensional, reduccionista y economicista-- se sitúa detrás de las afirmaciones de nacionalidad e identidad nacional. Esta tesis se opone radicalmente a la "sabiduría" convencional ampliamente difundida de que el nacio...
Conference Paper
this is a post-conference version of the same paper. For full abstract, see text.
Chapter
The suggestion that people are widely “in search of fundamentals” raises issues which can be situated at the center of contemporary social science, as well as those areas of the humanities which have in recent years coalesced into the “transdiscipline” of cultural studies.’ To consider the question whether or not and if so to what degree “people” a...
Article
Foreword - Margaret S Archer Introduction - Martin Albrow TOWARDS A UNIVERSAL SOCIAL SCIENCE Resisting the Revival of Relativism - Margaret S Archer Sociology as the Defetishisation of Modernity - Agnes Heller Conceptual Frameworks in Comparative Inquiry - Divergent or Convergent? - Piotr Sztompka INTERNATIONALISING SOCIOLOGY Sociology's Great Leap...
Chapter
The title of the symposium in which this paper was first presented contained three key terms: culture, globalization and world-system. Each of these is in one way or another problematic and contestable and it is, I think, desirable not merely to identify the main problems involved in the uses to which they may individually be put but also to addres...
Article
The views of Fenn and Beckford as to the present condition of the sociology of religion are considered and expanded with respect to the modern functional analysis of religion and the institutionalization of the latter. Fruitful aspects of neofunctionalism and new linkages between the sociology of religion and other foci are discussed.

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