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Views of Risk in Sweden: Global Fatalism and Local Control — An Empirical Investigation of Ulrich Beck’s Theory of New Risks
Department of Social Science, Mid Sweden University, Sweden.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-5000-311X
Department of Social Science, Mid Sweden University, Östersund, Sweden.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5355-4280
2007 (English)In: Journal of Risk Research, ISSN 1366-9877, E-ISSN 1466-4461, Vol. 10, no 2, p. 177-196Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Ulrich Beck's theory of risk society has been criticised because there is lack of empirical evidence. By comparing people with different life contexts and experiences, the aim of this study was to investigate how these people view risk, and if 'new' risks are perceived differently by different groups in society. Five focus-group interviews were conducted in Sweden, in 2004/05, with people in rural and urban areas, people with a foreign background and experts. The groups consisted of four people each and lasted for two hours. The results show that 'new' risks are not something people worry about; 'risk' is associated with personal experiences and life context. This indicates a traditional or at least modern way of viewing risk, and contradicts the idea of a reflexive view of risk. However, a division between the urban versus the rural-migrant groups appears: the expert-urban groups show a more global - fatalistic strategy to handle of risk, while the rural - migrant group shows a more traditional approach to risk, where control and the local context are in focus.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Abingdon: Routledge, 2007. Vol. 10, no 2, p. 177-196
Keywords [en]
Modernity, New risks, Risk strategies, Ulrich Beck, Views of risk
National Category
Sociology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hh:diva-39124DOI: 10.1080/13669870601122451ISI: 000245303900003Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-33947357167OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hh-39124DiVA, id: diva2:1320265
Note

Funding: The Swedish Rescue Services Agency

Available from: 2019-06-04 Created: 2019-06-04 Last updated: 2019-08-06Bibliographically approved

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