Neglect of cultural diversity by social service agencies
When attempting to provide help for a growing diversity of complex needs, social service institutions tend to pass over the possible contribution which could be made by the diverse cultures which they serve. Past traditions, strange anomalies, uniquenesses and eccentricities, particular interpretations of the meaning of life, and even factual information about the world, are all untapped. This frequently results in unnecessary subversion of otherwise helpful social programmes.
Much of the UK's continual disagreement with the European Community results from bitterness over the loss of British anomalies, such as their non-metric monetary and measurement systems. This suppression of senseless but precious eccentricity has created unnecessary resentment.
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.