The article distinguishes between two types of risks: conventional and systemic risks. Conventional risks can be contained in space and time, follow linear cause–effect relationships and can be addressed with effective and pointed interventions into the cause–effect chain. Systemic risks, however, are characterized by high complexity, transboundary effects, stochastic relationships, nonlinear cause–effect patterns with tipping points, and are often associated with less public attention than they require. The article addresses the reasons why systemic risks seem to be attenuated in public perception. The article goes on to consider how the social amplification of risk framework is useful in the context of systemic risks and describes needed extensions of that framework. It identifies practical tools for assessing the significance of perceptions for systemic risk situations. Finally, it argues that a graphic representation and simulation of evolving systemic risks and potential countermeasures as well as a participatory deliberative approach of inclusive risk governance are suitable governance strategies for preventing, mitigating, or managing systemic risks.
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Schweizer, P.-J., Goble, R., & Renn, O. (2021). Social perception of systemic risks. Risk analysis, 13831. doi:10.1111/risa.13831.
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