There is a direct correlation between the incidence of mental disorder and high-rise living. Such housing has a tendency to isolate people in their apartments; home life is separated from casual street life by hallways, long passageways, stairs and lifts; the decision to go out in search of public life becomes formal and awkward; and unless there is some specific task to bring people out into the world, they tend to stay at home alone. There is also a remarkable lack of communication between families in high-rise buildings. Children and the elderly are especially isolated; the elderly are too tired, feeble or discouraged to go through the apartment maze to get to the outside, and children become conditioned to a life within walls.
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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