The Constant Gardener

The Constant Gardner is a great example of how businesses and consumers among differing nations interact.

I think the major theme that relates to international business is the idea of businesses in developed countries exploiting the poor and uneducated citizens of a lesser-developed area. The British government, KDH, and Three Bee’s have worked together to ensure that they are the major profiteers of TB and HIV vaccines in Kenya. Due to a fear of competition from other drug representatives, they have become completely corrupt and use any means possible in order to make more money. One major tactic they have used is bribery (paying off people in order to continue with the trials). The lack of law enforcement in Kenya is another advantage that proved beneficial for them.  The “triple axis of evil” proves to value a masculine society with little effort to take on any sort of social responsibility.

There are a multitude of minor IB issues that the characters face throughout the entire movie. A major one is a lack of cultural sensitivity. One instance of this was when Justin went to look for Kioko Kalulu. Kioko was constantly giving signals to Justin that he did not want to be seen with him because he knew he would get in trouble by the police. However, Justin did not recognize at the time what was going on and was very persistent, resulting in Kioko being questioned and upset. Another instance was when Justin tried to bribe the pilot. He assumed that since the police asked for a bribe, that everyone in Kenya accepted them as a means to get ahead. However, he only ended up embarrassing the pilot and himself.

In addition: (1) The lack of infrastructure affected their ability to distribute vaccines. (2) Outside forces such as the mob of men on horses who came to kidnap children, take food, and cause harm in Sudan posed a threat for business. (3) Technology allowed Tessa to research more efficiently, resulting in the demise of the entire international business scandal. (4) Language barriers can be attributed to the inability of citizens to ask questions about the potential harms of the vaccinations.

There are multitudes of underlying themes in this film that relate to international business.