Operating from immediate needs rather than long-range planning, intersocial bodies have no effective way of dealing with the complexity of the future. The lack of long-range decision-making methods results in a limited global exchange of gifts and insights; and lack of motivation to participate in the corporate creation of the future inhibits the production of alternatives means for dealing with future requirements and thus obstructs long-term development of civilization.
A larger, societal context from which to make decisions corporately is missing in present-day affairs. The individual's ability to affect the decision-making process through free assembly as a corporate person is reduced to the most immediate issues.
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.