Perception and evaluation of risks: findings for New Zealand and cross-cultural comparisons
In a socio-psychological field study, perceptions and subjective evaluations of risky activities and environmental conditions were investigated in three countries: Germany, New Zealand and Australia. The aim of this cross-cultural project is to analyse the cognitive structure of judgments about the magnitude and acceptability of risks to which individuals are exposed, and to compare risk judgments across countries in which risk issues in general as well as particular risk sources (eg, industrial facilities or natural hazards) have different salience. Data comparisons for countries, for societal groups (eg, ecologists, engineers, feminists) and for types of risks demonstrate manifold differences. However, the considerable influence of psychological aspects on judging risks can be shown in all settings. Altogether the findings confirm the significance of the cultural context of risk evaluations. They are relevant for a better understanding of conflicts about risk and for improving risk communication among the various involved parties.... [Show full abstract]
Keywordsrisk management; environmental risk assessment; risk perception; cross cultural study; Germany; Australia; New Zealand; social science research; risk communication
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