Higher levels of perceived risk amongst older, less educated or lower-income individuals


Similarly, older people, people with lower income, and those who are less educated have increased level of perceived risk (e.g. Akerlof, Maibach, Fitzgerald, Cedeno, & Neuman, 2013; Grothmann & Reusswig, 2006; Savage, 1993). However, it should be noted that there are also studies that found only weak correlations between these socio-demographical variables and perceived risk or failed to find any effects at all (e.g. Brody, Zahran, Vedlitz, & Grover, 2008; Milfont, 2012). Nevertheless, it seems that there is a consensus in the literature that, when found, these effects point to the same direction as those regarding the effects of gender and race/ethnicity. Namely, the groups in question perceive themselves as more vulnerable to the potential disasters, due to the lack of resources and control, which, in turn, increases their risk perception (Finucane, Alhakami, Slovic, & Johnson, 2000; Slovic, 2000). Therefore, it seems that the observed differences have less to do with socio-demographic variables themselves and more with perceived vulnerability.

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