This paper offers a conceptual overview of relationships between the field of risk perception and two other distinct fields of inquiry: the social psychology of attitudes and decisions and research on complex systems, including connectionist simulations of cognitive and social processes. A key notion that unites these approaches is that risk perceptions, as a special case of social attitudes, are organized structures, built upon previous learning, that resist change and guide the interpretation of new information. I argue that many of the principles invoked to explain the performance of complex social systems are applicable to the belief systems of single individuals and vice versa.
Eiser, J.R. (2001), "Attitudes, decisions and perceptions of risk: A social psychological analysis", Böm, G., Nerb, J., McDaniels, T. and Spada, H. (Ed.) Environmental Risks: Perception, Evaluation and Management (Research in Social Problems and Public Policy, Vol. 9), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 109-135. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0196-1152(01)80026-0Download as .RIS
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