The severity of disasters caused by natural phenomena could be largely mitigated, and the actual occurrence of disasters caused by inappropriate human activities could be prevented, if adequate measures were taken before the event. However, little attention is given to long-term policies and plans: the identification of disaster-prone areas is incomplete; public information is scarce; early-warning systems are undeveloped; training of personnel is inadequate; and new legislation and environmental measures are either insufficient or non-existent. Often the effects of a disaster on a population are far greater than need be because of ignorance, neglect, poverty, and sometimes corruption and deceit.
Developing countries are especially vulnerable to disasters because they are generally not at all equipped to handle the resulting problems, nor do they have the resources to devote to prevention.
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.