Hadjilambrinos C., Thiel D. —
Discovering the Future: The Role of the Arts in Addressing Temporally Distant Environmental Risks
// SENTENTIA. European Journal of Humanities and Social Sciences.
– 2018. – ¹ 4.
– P. 27 - 37.
DOI: 10.25136/1339-3057.2018.4.27790 URL: https://en. nbpublish.com/library_read_article.php?id=27790
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Risk perception research conducted over the past twenty years has revealed that risk perception is characterized by a dual process in which rational-analytic thinking is preceded by and, ultimately, shaped by experiential-affective response. Neuroscience research has further shown that all decision-making processes are based on an integration of affective and analytic responses. Perceiving and, more importantly, acting to mitigate risks is based on an individual’s visualization of the consequences of his or her action. People react to temporally distant risks only on the basis of their current experience, which allows them to visualize these risks. In risks with which there is no experience, such as the risks from global climate change, there is little to generate affective response and, as a result, risk perception is typically inadequate. A solution to the problem of perception of temporally distant environmental risks emerges when we understand that risk perception requires engagement of the experiential response system and that this system translates reality into images, metaphors, and, ultimately, narratives. The arts, including literature, the performing arts, visual arts, etc. are humanity’s primary means for creating affective meaning in both the present and future. This paper describes how the arts can explore and, therefore, discover the future, driving a process of effective risk perception and response to temporally distant environmental risks.
Arts, science, technology, Science, technology, society, Arts and risk perception, Risk perception, Arts in risk communcation, Science communication, Risk communication, affect and decisionmaking, decisionmaking, risk and decisionmaking
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