Implementing alternative environmental development policies
Since current policies will not lead to a sustainable future, at either the regional or the global level, region-specific studies were undertaken for GEO-2000 to investigate possible alternative policies. In each study, several alternative policy responses were identified to address the issues at hand. Each of the selected responses has been implemented elsewhere with success. The results confirm that, in principle, the knowledge and technological base to solve environmental issues are available, and that if these alternative policies were implemented immediately and pursued with vigour they could indeed set the world on a more sustainable course.
Studies highlight major gaps in existing knowledge and experience when it comes to analysing and directing macro-economical processes relating to the environment. A number of issues, including trade and financial flows, cannot be adequately addressed because of a lack of relevant information and knowledge. There is an urgent need to improve understanding of the effects of economic and social developments on the environment, and vice versa.
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.