Over the past decade international organizations and developing countries have been trying to promote agricultural diversification among smallholders under the assumption that smallholders are too dependent upon a narrow range of crops. The International Coffee Organization and the Government of Indonesia have promoted agricultural diversification among coffee farmers to curb production and, thereby, increase prices. In South Sumatra, Indonesia, coffee smallholders diversify on their own initiative and depend upon numerous resource systems. They diversify out of coffee and even agriculture because other investments yield attractive returns and because further diversification within agriculture is often limited by agronomic and financial constraints.
Small farms are multi-functional, more productive, more efficient, and contribute more to economic development than large farms. Small farmers also make better stewards of natural resources, conserving biodiversity and safe-guarding the future sustainability of agricultural production.
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.