When powerlessness is negatively associated with mitigation intentions, victims become reluctant to engage in risk mitigation activities
When it comes to the effect of such changed perceptions of risk due to the negative experience on behaviour, Lin, Shaw, and Ho (2008) showed that victims of floods and landslides are, unexpectedly, less willing to engage in risk mitigation activities. This is the case even though they do perceive impacts of a potential threat to be larger and despite the fact that they do worry more about future disasters in comparison to non-victims. What might be an explanation for such a finding is the learned helplessness since the authors also found an increased sense of powerless in the group of victims. Namely, given that powerlessness is negatively associated with mitigation intentions, it seems that this factor overweighs the positive effect of increased perception of risk, thus making victims reluctant to engage in risk mitigation activities (Lin et al., 2008).
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Hazards: Natural hazards
Types of Actors Concerned: Non-active citizens