Beyond the knowledge deficit: recent research into lay and expert attitudes to food risks

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

The paper reviews psychological and social scientific research on lay attitudes to food risks. Many experts (scientists, food producers and public health advisors) regard public unease about food risks as excessive. This expert-lay discrepancy is often attributed to a 'knowledge deficit' among lay people. However, much research in psychology and sociology suggests that lay risk assessments are complex, situationally sensitive expressions of personal value systems. The paper is organised around four themes: risk perception, the communication of risk, lay handling of risk, and public trust in institutions and experts. It suggests that an interdisciplinary, contextualised and psychologically sound approach to the study of risk is needed.

Original languageEnglish
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)111-21
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2003

    Research areas

  • Attitude, Communication, Expert Testimony, Food, Food Handling, Perception, Psychometrics, Public Opinion, Risk, Risk Assessment

ID: 120848845