What are the advantages and disadvantages of commercialization?
Commercialization has several advantages and disadvantages.
1) Brings in revenue
2) Creates job opportunities (thus stemming the efflux of the workforce)
3) Generally leads to improved infrastructure (commercial activities leads to better roads, electricity, water, etc.)
4) Increases associated business opportunities (due to higher purchasing power, dependent business activities, etc.)
1) Burdens the existing resources
2) May lead to negative environmental impacts, including water and air pollution or noise pollution
3) May lead to increased instances of crime
4) Causes an influx of people, leading to increase in population
5) Extensive commercialization may lead to a change in lifestyles, which may or may not be preferred by many natives.
So, there are both pros and cons of commercialization, especially in the developing and underdeveloped world. The choice of whether to go ahead with it is a matter of weighing both the advantages and disadvantages.
Commercialization brings needed revenue and prosperity to underdeveloped areas. This commercialization provides a boost to the local economy by creating jobs. Investment into the location brings in industries that provide these jobs. Disadvantages of new business and commercialization to an area include an increase in population, disturbing the natural environment, increased crime rates, and environmental problems. Any time the population rises so does the incidence of crime against people and property. Industry or commercialization can bring added air and water pollution to the area.
There are several different ways the term "commercialization" is used. The advantages and disadvantages of it depend on the type of commercialization to which you are referring. One area is commercialization of underdeveloped nations or regions. Others are commercialization of technologies and education.
One area the term is applied to is commercialization of technologies. Take, for example biotechnology and medical research. When academic scientists are supported by government grants, they can focus on the basic science, on making discoveries that can benefit all of humanity. Many government grants require that the recipients make their results freely and publicly available. Commercialization is the design, development, manufacture, and marketing of "products based on new technologies" ("Commercialization," Princeton.edu). The advantage of commercializing this research is that it means a boost to the economy. The downside is that corporations aren't in the business of benefiting humanity but in the business of making a profit. This may mean focusing on the most profitable lines of research rather than on affordable cures for diseases and on keeping information proprietary to maximize profit from a monopoly on it rather than sharing it where it could be useful.
Another area of concern in North America is commercialization of education. Imagine something innocuous, such as a soft drink company, having an exclusive contract to sell and advertise sodas on a university campus. While the university benefits from the extra revenue, it might have a stifling effect on scientists researching the bad effects of soft drinks on health or the possibility that Beverage X contains cancer-causing chemicals. Any form of commercialization of education helps fund it but also threatens to limit intellectual freedom.