Dependence on complacency Complacent people Self-satisfaction Citizen complacency Culture of contentment
Self-satisfaction may result in failure to cope with problems of various kinds. People who are in a fortunate position tend to attribute virtue to what makes them content. So complacency reinforces social attitudes against change, and may justify social inequalities and injustice by moralism or cynicism. It aggravates social conflict and may encourage violence as an only recourse.
Prime Minister Chamberlain's satisfaction after the Munich Accords with Chancellor Hitler was a notable example of one form of complacency. Victorian attitudes in the UK towards the British Empire were also complacent. There was complacency after the founding of the United Nations Organization, as there had been after that of the League of Nations; and there is complacency among the industrialized nations that they are doing all they can for development in the Third World.
Collective complacency has become rarer in an increasingly turbulent world, where governments and organizations of all kinds are faced with problems of a nature and scale never before known.
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.
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