Kollmann, J., Benyamini, Y., Lages, N.C., Renner, B.

The Role of Personal Risk Experience—An Investigation of Health and Terrorism Risk Perception in Germany and Israel

Kollmann, J., Benyamini, Y., Lages, N.C., Renner, B. (2021). The role of personal risk experience—An investigation of health and terrorism risk perception in Germany and Israel. Risk Analysis. http://doi.org/10.1111/risa.13804

The present study examined the relationship between risk experience and risk perceptions in relation to the target (risk to the self vs. others) and for two different types of risk: acute risks (i.e., terrorist attacks) and cumulative health risks (i.e., alcohol consumption, tobacco consumption, and unhealthy eating) in two countries (Israel and Germany). An online survey (N = 571) was conducted to assess participants’ previous personal experience with acute and cumulative risks and their personal and general risk perceptions. The results showed that personal experience with terrorism was related to increased personal and general risk perceptions, while personal experience with cumulative health risks was related to increased personal but not general risk perceptions. It is argued that an increase in risk perception with more risk experience can be explained by the amount of available information about people’s
personal as well as other people’s risk status. The findings emphasize that the experience–risk perception relationship depends on the target of the risk and the type of risk experience.