Encyclopedia of World Problems

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title:4.7 Implications

1. Local vs. Global

This project may also be considered as an exploration of how the relationship between "local" and "global" may be comprehended in practice as a guide to action. The conventional geo-political interpretation is considered here to be merely one aspect of this problem, one which has the disadvantage of reinforcing nation-state oriented category schemes and single-factor approaches.


title:4.6 Future possibilities

1. Further research possibilities

The information in this publication is maintained in computer files as summarized in Section TZ. The project to date has been, and should continue to be, a data-collection and presentation exercise. The existence of an updated data base of this kind should also facilitate some types of research which have hitherto been almost impossible.


title:4.4 Criticism

1. Failure to advocate a position

A major criticism levelled at this project has been that it did not take a "position" or advocate a "stance". Such criticism fails to realize that the project is about the necessity of moving beyond the mind-set that engenders answer arenas where "stance-taking" is perceived as the only appropriate form of activity.


title:4.3 Strengths and weaknesses

The strengths identified below may, from a different perspective, be understood as weaknesses. Similarly, the weaknesses identified may, under other circumstances, be considered strengths.

1. Strengths

(a) Range: The principal strength of this publication lies in the range of information presented, often derived from inaccessible documents, reflecting a broad spectrum of cultures, ideologies, disciplines and belief systems. Many of the topics are little-known, however vitally relevant they may appear to those who are especially sensitive to them.


title:4.2 Biases

In the light of the scope and methods noted above, a further influence on the design of the publication was a number of specific biases, some of which strongly influenced the length of any description. Other biases are discussed in more detail in the methodological assumptions for World Problems (see Section PZ) and for Human Development (Section HZ), and in less detail for Human Values (see Section VZ).

1. Pluralism


title:3.4 Language-determined distinctions

This project is in many ways an exploration of the use of language and the effects of its use on the distinctions that are accepted in international discourse. The names under which the world problems described in Section P have been detected, for example, exploit many of the word variants available in the English language. The same is true of the entries on human development (Section H) and human values (Section V).



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