Scientist and politicians agreed in 1997 that the only hope for halting the seemingly inexorable shrinkage of the Aral Sea would involve drastic conservation. But because all the Central Asian countries require great amounts of water for irrigation and power, none is ready to take radical steps. Making a major cut in the amount of water taken from the feeding rivers would mean a big drop in agricultural production, widespread unemployment and tremendous social dislocation. "Maybe we could absorb 5 percent cut, but certainly not more than that." If these countries are going to change their ways and cut their water use, they need to industrialize or at least start growing other crops that don't need as much water. That is a huge project.
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.