Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=1319881
 
 

References (23)



 
 

Citations (3)



 


 



Overreaction to Fearsome Risks


Cass R. Sunstein


Harvard Law School

Richard J. Zeckhauser


Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS); National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

December 3, 2008

Harvard Law School Program on Risk Regulation Research Paper No. 08-17
HKS Working Paper No. RWP08-079
U of Chicago, Public Law Working Paper No. 446
U of Chicago Law & Economics, Olin Working Paper No. 253

Abstract:     
Fearsome risks are those that stimulate strong emotional responses. Such risks, which usually involve high consequences, tend to have low probabilities, since life today is no longer nasty, brutish and short. In the face of a low-probability fearsome risk, people often exaggerate the benefits of preventive, risk-reducing, or ameliorative measures. In both personal life and politics, the result is damaging overreactions to risks. We offer evidence for the phenomenon of probability neglect, failing to distinguish between high and low-probability risks. Action bias is a likely result.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 16

working papers series





Download This Paper

Date posted: December 24, 2008  

Suggested Citation

Sunstein, Cass R. and Zeckhauser, Richard J., Overreaction to Fearsome Risks (December 3, 2008). Harvard Law School Program on Risk Regulation Research Paper No. 08-17; HKS Working Paper No. RWP08-079; U of Chicago, Public Law Working Paper No. 446; U of Chicago Law & Economics, Olin Working Paper No. 253. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1319881 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1319881

Contact Information

Cass R. Sunstein (Contact Author)
Harvard Law School ( email )
1575 Massachusetts Ave
Areeda Hall 225
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-496-2291 (Phone)
Richard J. Zeckhauser
Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) ( email )
79 John F. Kennedy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-495-1174 (Phone)
617-384-9340 (Fax)
National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )
1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-495-1174 (Phone)
617-496-3783 (Fax)
Feedback to SSRN


Paper statistics
Abstract Views: 4,062
Downloads: 985
Download Rank: 9,615
References:  23
Citations:  3

© 2014 Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.  FAQ   Terms of Use   Privacy Policy   Copyright   Contact Us
This page was processed by apollo1 in 0.422 seconds