The articles collected here are foundational contributions to integrating behavioural research and risk analysis. They include seminal articles on three essential challenges. One is ensuring effective two-way communication between technical experts and the lay public, so that risk analyses address lay concerns and provide useful information to people who need it. The second is ensuring that analyses make realistic assumptions about human behaviours that affect risk levels (e.g., how people use pharmaceuticals, operate equipment, or respond to evacuation orders). The third is ensuring that analyses recognize the strengths and weaknesses of experts’ understanding, using experts’ knowledge, while understanding its limits. The articles include overviews of the science, essays on the role of risk in society, and applications to domains as diverse as environment, medicine, terrorism, human rights, chemicals, pandemics, vaccination, HIV/AIDS, xenotransplantation, sexual assault, energy, and climate change. The work involves collaborations among scientists from many disciplines, working with practitioners to produce and convey the knowledge needed help people make better risk decisions.
Table of Contents
Introduction Section 1: Overview 1. Risk Perception and Communication 2. Cognitive Processes in Stated Preference Methods Section 2: Behaviorally Realistic Risk Analysis 3. Cost-benefit Analysis and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance 4. Individuals’ Decisions Affecting Radiation Exposure After a Nuclear Event 5. Predicting Emergency Evacuation and Sheltering Behavior: A Structured Analytical Approach 6. An Integrative Approach to Label Design and Evaluation 7. Analyzing Disaster Risks and Plans: An Avian Flu Example Section 3: Social Context of Behavioral Research 8. Lay Foibles and Expert Fables in Judgments about Risk 9. Risk Perception and Communication Unplugged: Twenty Years of Process 10. Non-persuasive Communication about Matters of Greatest Urgency: Climate Change Section 4: Risk Communication 11. What Forecasts (seem to) Mean 12. Patients’ Vaccination Comprehension and Decisions 13. Development and Evaluation of an HIV/AIDS Knowledge Measure for Adolescents Focusing on Misconceptions 14. Communicating about Xenotransplanation: Models and Scenarios Section 5: Aiding Individual Risk Decisions 15. What do Patients Want? Help in Making Effective Choices 16. Giving Advice: Decision Theory Perspectives on Sexual Assault 17. Sticky Decisions: Peanut Butter in a time of Salmonella Section 6: Aiding Public Risk Decisions 18. A Multi-channel Stakeholder Consultation Process for Energy Deregulation 19. The Science and Practice of Risk Ranking 20. Counting Casualties: A Framework for Respectful, Useful Records. Postscript: Integrating Risk Analysis and Behavioral Research
Baruch Fischhoff is Howard Heinz University Professor, Carnegie Mellon University, US, Department of Social and Decision Sciences, Department of Engineering and Public Policy.