Encyclopedia of World Problems - Archived Information

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Very specific problems

This section groups together very specific problems. They themselves tend to be grouped under broader problems described in earlier sections. A problem is included here when it is considered too specific to merit inclusion in any of the previous sections, especially if it constitutes one of a number of sub-elements of specific problems described there.
No descriptions are provided. The problems in Section G only appear:
  • as cross-references of entries in earlier sections
  • in the index which refers to entries in earlier sections in which they are mentioned as cross-references
Note that further information relevant to an understanding of the problem may be present in other problems to which the index cross-reference refers, especially any broader problems.
This section groups 2,153 problems for which there are 5,974 cross-references.
In the process of collecting information for description in the previous sections, the names of many interesting candidates for inclusion emerge. The many problems in this section constitute the detail of reference books on diseases, endangered species, problems of particular commodities or economic sectors, and the like. As such they are easily ignored in attempts to respond to the classes of problems in which they belong.
It is by specific problems that people and groups are touched. The challenge is to explore methods of providing pointers to the maximum number of such problems. Keyword indexes and hierarchies of cross-references are used, thus ensuring a trace on them, whether or not it is possible or appropriate to provide a succinct description of them at this stage. The difficulty is to establish useful cut-off points to avoid overwhelming the process with problems at an excessive level of detail.
Registering a problem in this section ensures that borderline cases can be noted, indexed and included in heirarchies and networks of cross-references in anticipation of the opportunity for future research and editorial work on them. This section therefore provides a possibility for initiating the process of setting such problems in context.
The entries are based on information obtained from international organizations, from a wide variety of reference books, or as reported in the international media. The procedures for identifying world problems are described in the Notes.
A keyword index to entries is provided.
Detailed comments are given in the Notes.
The emphasis throughout this volume has been placed on providing descriptions of less well-known problems, particularly when the extensive material available on the better known problems contained neither succinct descriptions of them nor descriptive material which could easily be reduced to succinct descriptions.
In a number of cases a problem could have been allocated to another section. Inclusion of a problem in this section, rather than in preceding, has been based on a number of factors. This position of the problem in one or more hierarchies of cross-references was a major factor in determining its allocation to this section. Some problems, which would otherwise be allocated to this section, have been allocated to earlier sections (usually Section E). This has been done when the information available, or the pattern of cross-references, suggestedd that it would be of value to see them as part of the problem network.
Possible future improvements
There is much scope for improving the quality of problem entries through feedback from interested bodies. More bibliographic references could be included where appropriate, as well as references to major resolutions concerning those problems recognized by the United Nations. There is also much scope for improving the pattern of cross-references, both between problems, to other sections of this volume (eg values) and to the 20,000 internationally-active bodies in the companion series (Yearbook of International Organizations).