Risk Communication: A Mental Models Approach

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Overview

People today must take decisions about many health, safety, and environmental risks. Nuclear power, HIV/AIDS, radon, vaccines, climate change, and emerging infectious diseases are just some of the issues that may face them in the news media, ballot box, or doctor's office. In order to make sound choices they need to get good information. Because their time is limited, that information has to be carefully selected and clearly presented. This book provides a systematic approach for risk communicators and technical experts hoping to serve the public by providing information about risks. The procedure uses approaches from risk and decision analysis to identity the most relevant information; it also uses approaches from psychology and communication theory to ensure that its message is understood. This book is written in nontechnical terms, designed to make the approach feasible for anyone willing to try it. It is illustrated with successful communications, on a variety of topics.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'The authors' idea of expert models of risk ... is a very useful one, both for practitioners and academics doing work in this area. In fact, the chapters outlining these models made a very important and unique contribution in the field of risk communication and for that reason alone the book should be on the reading list of everyone doing research in that area.' International Journal of Public Opinion Research
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521802239
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 7/1/2001
  • Pages: 366
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Table of Contents

1. Introduction; 2. The Carnegie Mellon mental models approach; 3. Creating an expert model of the risk; 4. Mental model interviews; 5. Confirmatory questionnaires; 6. Development and evaluation of communications; 7. Case studies: applications to environmental risks; 8. A mental models approach to HIV/AIDS; 9. Some concluding remarks; Appendices.

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