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Modern Risk in Risk Society

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  1. Modern Risk in Risk Society Karri Liikkanen University of Helsinki Second Internation Education Forum 2013 Huntington Beach, California 17.12.2013

  2. Ulrich Beck

  3. Risk Society • Beck: Risk Society 1986 • Risksurpasseswealthas a factorthatdefineslifeandeconomics • > Distribution ofriskinsteadofwealth • Industrial societydefinedbywealth, risksocietybyrisk • Fundamental change in economics

  4. Riskasriskanalystsseeit • The degree of risk is a function of two things: probabilityand harm. Risk analysts typically calculate the degree of risk by multiplying the harm of the bad event with its probability (which is expressed either as a percentage or, more typically, as a decimal fraction, i.e., a number between 0 and 1).

  5. Risk in theBeckian sense • “Risk may be defined as a systematic way of dealing with hazards and insecurities induced and introduced by modernization itself.” • > Beck-rick is always a product of the modernization process • In Beckian sense the risk analysis breaks down, as risks are complex and apocalyptic • Good example is energy, as the constant need of energy is an insecurity induced by modernization.

  6. Modernization • Broadtermforthesocietybecomingmoreandmorecomplex. Forusitismostimportanttonote 2 things: • Itisimpossibletoreallymeasuretheriskswithinit – theyaretoocomplex • Also that a modernizedsocietyproducesriskssystematically.

  7. Measurement • Chernobyl1985 • WHO: deaths from the accident at 56 and from radiation to 9,000 • Greenpeace: 250,000 cancers and 100,000 deaths from cancer • Russian professor AlekseiJablokov: 900,000 deaths

  8. RiskProduction • Society produces risks, because its constant needs need to be satisfied. From this follows an interesting contradiction: destruction of the earth destroys the value of goods, but the justification of destruction comes from the supposed growth of the value of goods. • Science is part of the modernized society – it is blind to the risks and unable to act on them

  9. RiskasPart oftheSystem (Society) • What has created the wealth in the developed countries? • Technology • Technology from the point of view of economics: “technology is knowledge of how to transform raw materials into goods that consumers use to fulfill their needs” • > Technology fuels economic growth, which creates wealth. AND • > Technology needs economic growth, as it demands resources which the economic growth can deliver

  10. Fukushima 11.3.2011 • Both “traditional” and Beckian risk • Earthquake AND nuclear power plant – traditional and Beckian risk are intertwined • Just as Chernobyl 26 years earlier: very difficult to measure the actual effects and consequences

  11. Hard tomeasureandtopredict • Nassim Nicholas Taleb: Black Swans • E.g. after Fukushima Japanesepoliticiansmadestatementssayingthatit was impossibletopredictthedisaster • > OR Wereprecautions just not taken?

  12. Measurestofacetherisks • Policies. As mentionedby e.g. Mr. Costas Grigoropoulos on ourfirstday, whenthereis a crisis, thesystemreactstoitbyfundingthe clean energiesmore. Other policymeasureis e.g. emissionregulations • > Toolittletoolate? • Out ofthe box thinkingneeded? • Education is a conservativesystem, asmentionedby Mr. Timo Airaksinen • Also theproblemofbeing “Locked in“ (asmentionedby Mr. Jan Ossenbrink) • Humansasspeciesarepronetochoosetheshorttermprofit • Working together (asmentionedbythe Toyota representativethismorning

  13. Emission Regulations

  14. Forum Scope • Human beings have acquired “Energy” in search of a 2S society that ensures “Safety” and “Sustainability”. Subsequently, we enhanced “Economic” activity through the Industrial Revolution, and now face “Environmental” problems. Since the 1970’s, our country has developed by harmonizing the 3E through policy measures, according to the requests of the times, and has come to play international roles taking 2S for granted. The Great East Japan Earthquake in March 2011 made not only Japan but also the entire world recognize once again the importance of 2S that underlie 3E. • The reconstruction and development of Japan require the harmony of 3E which is different from the historical pre-quake experiences. The balance among 3E that premise on 2S depends greatly on social circumstances and regionality, and 2S and 3E constantly cross one another spatio-temporally. Such relationship is not the regular four arithmetic operations, in mathematical terms, but the cross product of 2 vectors with different directionalities. We have just entered the 2S x 3E era. • ACEEES has expertise in both environment and energy fields, and aims to nurture human resource that can lead the 2S x 3E era, equipped with the bird’s-eye-view to judge the issues that transform spatio-temporally from multifaceted viewpoints, accurate and quick self-reliant ability to extract and resolve issues, and global leadership, so as to lead the innovation.

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