Economic bias in disease research Uneconomical malaria research
Rich countries study the diseases that afflict their citizens and ignore the major killer diseases of the developing world when it comes to medical research expenditure.
Malaria is an example of a disease that ranks high for death and disability in poor countries but very low in research expenditures among rich nations where it is rare to nonexistant. While commercial medical research in the developed world is a multibillion dollar industry, research into malaria - which kills upwards of 3 million people each year - is estimated around US $100 million, mostly from public funds. Researchers in malaria, which is virulent in Asia and Africa, say malaria offers little potential for long term profits or even recouping the costs of research.
A 1998 report in Science magazine, proposed a consortium approach for malaria research involving private firms, medical foundations, government and international health agencies in a 7 year build up to an annual expenditure of US $ 30 million, with private firms providing 70% of the total research budget. The companies declined to be involved for a variety of commercial, legalistic and scientific reasons, with some of them explaining that they were already doing some work on drugs and vaccines.
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.