The Grand Prix industry is a multi-million dollar enterprise with finances which are truly transnational in origin. During its annual tour, it links together major metropolitan areas from the West and the East, northern and southern hemispheres, as well as the First World and Third. Wherever the Prix is physically located, the race is immediately beamed to millions of homes across the world. As a popular cultural event, it epitomizes postmodern experience in the relative ease with which it transcends the customary limits of time, space and local social organization.
The genre of global culture demands constant scrutiny since it poses a major threat to local cultural experience. The sense of attachment and belong to a particular place is considered under assaults from universal fashions, world-wide fast food outlets, soap operas, film series and mass music. For as these innovate in particular directions, they are all instantly transmitted across the global village where they have not just an homogenizing effect on local cultural diversity, but also a destructive one. The emphasis on instant entertainment and immediate gratification, inclines to eliminate from view the more serious issues generated by the experience of late capitalism. Such is the symbolic potency of mass consumerism that its economic and political implications are readily lost sight of.
Children in developing countries are generally bicultural rather than monocultural. Many are bilingual. They grow up in their own culture as well as absorbing the dominant culture.
The Encyclopedia of World Problems and Human Potential is a collaboration between UIA and Mankind 2000, started in 1972. It is the result of an ambitious effort to collect and present information on the problems with which humanity is confronted, as well as the challenges such problems pose to concept formation, values and development strategies. Problems included are those identified in international periodicals but especially in the documents of some 60,000 international non-profit organizations, profiled in the Yearbook of International Organizations.
The Encyclopedia includes problems which such groups choose to perceive and act upon, whether or not their existence is denied by others claiming greater expertise. Indeed such claims and counter-claims figure in many of the problem descriptions in order to reflect the often paralyzing dynamics of international debate. In the light of the interdependence demonstrated among world problems in every sector, emphasis is placed on the need for approaches which are sufficiently complex to encompass the factions, conflicts and rival worldviews that undermine collective initiative towards a promising future.
Non-profit, apolitical, independent, and non-governmental in nature, the UIA has been a pioneer in the research, monitoring and provision of information on international organizations, international associations and their global challenges since 1907.