Risk Perception and Affect
Current Directions in Psychological Science, Vol. 15, No. 6, pp. 322-325, 2006
Posted: 15 Mar 2010
Date Written: March 11, 2010
Humans perceive and act on risk in two fundamental ways. Risk as feelings refers to individuals' instinctive and intuitive reactions to danger. Risk as analysis brings logic, reason, and scientific deliberation to bear on risk management. Reliance on risk as feelings is described as "the affect heuristic." This article traces the development of this heuristic and discusses some of the important ways that it impacts how people perceive and evaluate risk.
Keywords: risk perception, risk analysis, the affect heuristic
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