The intercultural exchange of life-styles, gifts, and ideas is essential to human development, yet access to this interchange is severely restricted, in particular for many Third World rural communities. Residents may realize the significant effects of national and global events, and glean what they can by listening to radios in the streets and by conversing with neighbours in the regional towns, but these channels are minimal compared with what is both needed and desired. Travel to the market centre is the major contact point with the world, and travel beyond that is almost inconceivable. Women in particular do not expect to go far from their own village, and resources which might enrich and develop family life are felt to be so far off as to be virtually inaccessible. Access to the varying experiences and educational options that might enable village people to create a more effective life-style are strictly limited, nor are there means for the village culture to express itself to the nation or to the world.
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.