Global Strategies Project (Explanations
Global Strategies and Solutions Project
Overview: Global Strategies Project
Scope and rationale
The purpose of this project
is to identify the complete range of strategies perceived by international
constituencies, whether as a focus for their programme activities, their
research, their protest, their recommendations, or as part of their belief
system. An entry has been established on each strategy. This provides a
context within which the network of specific relationships perceived between
these strategies may also be identified.
As a whole, this section on strategies endeavours to present phenomena in
society that take such names as actions, solutions, programmes, campaigns,
agendas and which are perceived positively by the groups or individuals undertaking
them. These are initiatives which engender feelings of creativity and advancement.
They are undertakings taken for the improvement, maintenance or recovery of
desirable conditions. Their execution serves the interests of the strategic
actors and very often are explicitly for the good of others. As such they
are a major force in the development of society.
This does not always mean that all strategies are perceived by others as
positive. The stimuli prompting strategic response can engender fear, irrational
and destructive responses equally as well as considered, balanced and creative
remedial actions. Groups may be very strongly motivated by the problems which
infringe their values and arouse their indignation. Some such problems may
be other's strategies.
The varying perceptions documented in this section raise useful questions
concerning the nature of strategies and what is meant by adopting a strategy.
Inclusion of a strategy in this section is therefore not considered by the
editors to mean that the strategy "exists", but only that a functionally significant
group of people in a number of countries endorse the strategy or claim that
it exists on the basis of the facts available to them.
There is considerable difficulty obtaining material on strategies -- rather
than on the opinions, beliefs, theories, disciplines or other frameworks through
which perception of strategies is filtered. A primary aim of the editorial
work has been to render strategies generic, [ie] transcending national frontiers,
organization boundaries and individual philosophies and mind-sets.
This project was conceived as a necessary major complement to the World
Problems Project, subsequent to the first edition of the Encyclopedia
of World Problems and Human Potential in 1976 -- then titled the Yearbook
of World Problems and Human Potential. Further explanation is provided
in comments on Background
Organization and structure
The types of problems distinguished are discussed elsewhere (Global
Type Codes). As a consequence, this section contains sub-sections
|Abstract strategies (A)
|Basic universal strategies (B)
|Cross-sectoral strategies (C)
|Detailed strategies (D)
|Emanations of other strategies (E)
|Exceptional strategies (F)
|Very specific strategies (G)
|Strategies under consideration (J)
In 1996 (as a consequence of the 1994-5 edition) this section
contained entries on a total of 29,542 strategies grouping 52,406 strategy
names which are indexed by keyword. The entries are linked by 84,890 cross-references.
As indicated above, the section is divided into 5 major sub-sections -- B
through F -- containing descriptive entries. A further three sub-sections
correspond to entries which are referenced-only
(by entries in B through F); they were neither printed, nor indexed. A further
section (P) was an an experimental section used to cluster strategies according
to 239 value polarities and 45 value clusters.
details see World
Problems and Global Strategies: statistics on profiles and relationships (1996-2000).
Detailed statistics are also available in the commentary.
Profiles of organization strategies (over 32,695 entries,
262,941 links) on implemented, or advocated strategies, as
international constituencies (intergovernmental organizations,
international nongovernmental associations (NGOs) and other bodies -- profiled
in a complementary source: Yearbook
of International Organizations):
Method and development
The entries are based on information obtained from international organizations,
a wide variety of reference books, or as reported in the international media.
Research procedures were designed to detect both well-publicized strategies
as well as little-known strategies, whether recognized by official bodies
or not. The procedures include methods of handling hierarchies of sub-strategies
which extend down to a level of specificity that is inappropriate to attempt
to handle at this stage.
Detailed comments on methods are provided in a commentary.
Source: The global strategies profiled are those recognized
by over 20,000 international organizations (profiled in the Yearbook
of International Organizations) and other constituencies. Some
of the problems may be recognized by many organizations, others may only be
recognized by loose networks, movements or isolated groups of experts.
Names: Strategies do not have unique or
official names. Many of the strategies have two or more other
names associated with them to reflect different keywords
and ways of describing them. Some have up to ten names. Any
alphabetic list, based on a single name per strategy, is therefore
an essentially arbitrary ordering of the strategies. As a
random presentation of the contents of the database, it has
the advantage of drawing attention to the variety of modes
of action envisaged by individuals and groups. Some strategies
are decidedly controversial -- and may even amount to problems.
Development: It is important to recognize
that the database is continually being expanded with
user participation, notably through the addition
of more specific problems that are aspects of those already
included and the interaction between problems in vicious
Detailed explanations and commentary are also provided in a collection of
Research studies on strategies (written
in relation to this project, to international organizations and to the global
problematique), are directly accessible from separate checklists:
A significant number of the studies on the organization of information are
concerned with how it might be made more relevant to policy-making, and with
how information on the multitude of strategies might be configured for more
fruitful comprehension -- both by elites and by their constituencies.Many of the studies are concerned with how information on the multitude of
advocated strategies might be more fruitfully organized and configured to enable
more coherent action. The development of the databases and the user-interfaces
on the web are being developed with this in mind.
Note that more general comments and explanations, regarding the collection
of projects initiated within the framework of the Encyclopedia
of World Problems and Human Potential, are available in a collection of
The contents presented by this project may be considered as complementing
the other projects in ways such as the following:
- World problems: By the direct
relationship between the recognition of problems and the development of strategies
to remedy or counteract them.
- Human development: By the
manner in which human development is framed and advanced by strategies, and
through the strategic component of global development, (including the pursuit
of particular forms of human development and the conflict between different
forms of human development).
- Integrative knowledge: By
the importance of integrative knowledge for comprehending the nature of the
global resolutique; by the manner in which that resolutique calls for new
kinds of integrative knowledge.
- Metaphors and patterns: By
the strategies of communication in a global society and by the need to communicate
the nature of strategies.
- Transformative approaches: By
the importance of such approaches in offering new strategic insights.
- Human values: By the direct
correspondence between positive values and strategies, and by they manner
in which strategies only become perceptible in the light of the values upon
which they are based.
Reservations and disclaimer
Reservations: The emphasis throughout this project has been
placed on providing descriptions of less well-known strategies, particularly
when the extensive material available on the better known strategies contained
neither succinct descriptions of them nor descriptive material which could
easily be reduced to succinct descriptions.
The strategy descriptions in this project represent a compilation of views
from published documents (usually from international organizations) and are
in no way intended as an accusation or a criticism of any particular group
or country by the editors or publishers of this volume. By including or excluding
particular strategies, the editors are in no way implying either approval or
disapproval of the strategy as conceived or as described. The same strategies
tend to be viewed differently by different groups in society. For one group
a strategy is of the utmost importance and urgency, for another the same strategy
is insignificant, does not exist, or is completely misconceived on the basis
of available facts.
Disclaimer: This Encyclopedia necessarily includes
some strategies which appear "negative," and may indeed be treated
separately as problems (both by those using opposing or incompatible strategies
and in the problems database of
the Encyclopedia). Some strategies (including slave and drug trading), which
are generally rejected by the international community today, have been actively
and openly pursued by some countries in the not too distant past. Other "negative" strategies
(including "political assassination" and "destabilization of foreign countries")
continue to be actively pursued by some countries, if only as covert operations
considered essential to their national security. "Abortion" is an example
of a highly controversial strategy employed by some that is also treated
and perceived as a problem by others. "Thieving", and even "blinding children" (to
improve their income as beggars), may be amongst the few strategies open
to the impoverished. On the other hand, many seemingly "positive" strategies
(such as "the Green Revolution") may be criticized for their "negative" consequences
by significant constituencies. This collection of strategies should
NOT therefore be considered as a simple list of "positive" strategies recommended
by the organizations providing the information.
At the same time, the majority of the strategies are indeed
advocated for their constructive outcomes. Both the demo
and list challenge the reader, and any policy-maker, to exercise
discrimination in determining under what circumstances a
strategy (such as "structural adjustment") may be used and
in what way it may be "positive" or "negative" in its consequences.
This is often the dilemma faced by leaders. In some demo
profiles, explanatory texts are included, where available,
to clarify conflicting claims as to the "positive" or "negative" function
of each strategy from different perspectives. Many strategies
are perceived to have both "positive" and "negative" consequences
in constraining or facilitating other strategies (documented
as hyperlinks in the CD-Rom version of the Encyclopedia).
The demo and list, however controversial and incomplete,
therefore represent a first attempt to depict the "ecosystem" of
interrelated initiatives active in society, whether actually
or potentially. Inclusion of "strategies" on this list should
not be considered to imply that they are advocated by the
Statistics on strategies (and relationships between them), in the light
of the methodology of this project, are provided in tables in the commentary and were published in the Encyclopedia
of World Problems and Human Potential. They are also also available
Media used & multi-media
The information generated by this project on global strategies
(and relationships between them and with entities profiled
in other projects) has been published initially in the Encyclopedia
of World Problems and Human Potential; subsequently
it has been made available
Networks of perceived relationships between strategies can
be explored with the experimental visualization techniques
associated with the on-line version of the strategies
of World Problems and Human Potential