Communicating Risks to the Public: International Perspectives

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R.E Kasperson, Pieter Jan M. Stallen
Springer Science & Business Media, Dec 31, 1990 - Technology & Engineering - 482 pages
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Risk communication: the evolution of attempts Risk communication is at once a very new and a very old field of interest. Risk analysis, as Krimsky and Plough (1988:2) point out, dates back at least to the Babylonians in 3200 BC. Cultures have traditionally utilized a host of mecha nisms for anticipating, responding to, and communicating about hazards - as in food avoidance, taboos, stigma of persons and places, myths, migration, etc. Throughout history, trade between places has necessitated labelling of containers to indicate their contents. Seals at sites of the ninth century BC Harappan civilization of South Asia record the owner and/or contents of the containers (Hadden, 1986:3). The Pure Food and Drug Act, the first labelling law with national scope in the United States, was passed in 1906. Common law covering the workplace in a number of countries has traditionally required that employers notify workers about significant dangers that they encounter on the job, an obligation formally extended to chronic hazards in the OSHA's Hazard Communication regulation of 1983 in the United States. In this sense, risk communication is probably the oldest way of risk manage ment. However, it is only until recently that risk communication has attracted the attention of regulators as an explicit alternative to the by now more common and formal approaches of standard setting, insuring etc. (Baram, 1982).

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Risk communication in Europe Ways of implementing art 8 of the postSeveso directive
Active and passive provision of risk information in the Netherlands
Developing communications about risks of major industrial accidents in the Netherlands
Rights and duties concerning the availability of environmental risk information to the public
Risk comparisons and risk communication Issues and problems in comparing health and environmental risks
Contaminated soil public reactions policy decisions and risk communication
Prior knowledge and risk communication The case of nuclear radiation and Xrays
The role of the media in risk communication
Communicating about pesticides in drinking water
The time dimension in perception and communication of risk
Risk communication and the social amplification of risk
Hazard images evaluations and political action The case of toxic waste incineration
The danger culture of industrial society
Risk communication in emergencies
Risk communication The need for a broader perspective
Small group studies of regulatory decision making for powerfrequency electric and magnetic fields

Credibility and trust in risk communication
How people might process medical information A mental model perspective on the use of package inserts
Strategies of risk communication Observations from two participatory experiments

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