Union of Intelligible Associations
Union of Intelligible Associations


within a strategic reframing of the Union of International Associations (2005)

[reframe index]

Multi-dimensional scope

The UIA initiative endeavours to interrelate a wide range of specific concerns and approaches variously understood as important to an integrated understanding of the challenges of society. Its main bias is effectively to favour comprehensiveness and internationality, to the point of including marginal perspectives of small constituencies

International focus

The focus of the UIA remains international -- in an effort to identify the initiatives and preoccupations that emerge from national and local concerns around the world that are articulated through international and regional bodies.

Interdisciplinary commitment

The UIA imitative emerges from the origins of the systematic preoccupations of documentalists and the concern to interrelate the range of human interests through a common framework. Paul Otlet, one of the founders, was a key figure in the development of the Universal Decimal Classification (UDC) system and associated bibliographical initiatives.

Intersectoral relationships

Irrespective of intellectual discipline, the UIA has a traditional concern with recognizing the interrelationship between the various modes of human activity, whether physical, faith-based, academic, interest-based, commercial, or otherwise -- as expressed through contrasting types of institution (associations, corporations, academia, professional bodies, governmental institutions, etc)

Intercultural sensitivity

The UIA endeavours to adapt its initiatives to take account of the variety of languages, cultures and epistemological frameworks, whether or not these are equally expressed through international bodies.

Multi-lingual access

Considerable attention has been given to the multi-lingual challenge and to automatic translation procedures. Emphasis is placed on multi-lingual keyword access from a variety of languages, even when data is only available in English. Organization descriptions have been translated into French, for example, with ACCT support.

Complexity of all fields of human activity

As implied above, the UIA seeks to re-present any field of human activity as expressed through international bodies -- or articulated in their perceptions of world problems, or strategies in response to them. It is especially interested in discovering ways to show the formal and systemic relationships between these seemingly disparate preoccupations.