Even if the task of societal learning can be shared amongst the appropriate sectors of society, there is a limit in the ability to establish functional connections between knowledge units and between those so connected. In addition, such systems are, even more so than the telephone, only available to the privileged. However much they spread in industrialized countries, access to them in developing countries will be very limited. If it is argued that such a degree of on-line interconnectedness is not a necessity for all, there is a dynamic discontinuity with those who can only be contacted by post (or unilaterally via the mass media). This disconnection is perceived as a serious gap by those on each side of it and immediately affects the dynamism of the learning process and of its use.
The Encyclopedia of World Problems and Human Potential is a unique, experimental research work of the Union of International Associations. It is currently published as a searchable online platform with profiles of world problems, action strategies, and human values that are interlinked in novel and innovative ways. These connections are based on a range of relationships such as broader and narrower scope, aggravation, relatedness and more. By concentrating on these links and relationships, the Encyclopedia is uniquely positioned to bring focus to the complex and expansive sphere of global issues and their interconnected nature.
The initial content for the Encyclopedia was seeded from UIA’s Yearbook of International Organizations. UIA’s decades of collected data on the enormous variety of association life provided a broad initial perspective on the myriad problems of humanity. Recognizing that international associations are generally confronting world problems and developing action strategies based on particular values, the initial content was based on the descriptions, aims, titles and profiles of international associations.
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.