Pastoral people in arid and semi-arid lands have, with time, developed rational sustainable land use systems based on the mobility of their livestock herds, and making optimal use of the land both geographically and ecologically. Historically such systems were self-regulating with periodic famines and disease outbreaks acting as controls. These self-regulating mechanisms are for various reasons, no longer allowed full play with resulting deterioration in land-use patterns, particularly in the settlement zones. Few people perceive the use of their land-use strategies as a soil and water conservation benefit, yet in preserving their land and vegetation this is exactly what it is. Likewise planners in soil and water conservation, in many cases, do not see the value of such strategies, preferring the use of structures in curing the problem rather than preventing the disease. There is considerable benefit in researching and incorporating such traditional values into soil and water conservation practice for arid and semi-arid lands.
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.
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