Risk Perceptions of Men and Women Scientists

Title: Risk Perceptions of Men and Women Scientists
Format: Journal Article
Publication Date: March 1997
Published In: Social Science Quarterly
Description: Objective. Studies of the general public have shown that women express far greater concern than men about many health and environmental hazards. A variety of explanations have been offered, including differentials in scientific knowledge or general concerns about technology. The purpose of this study is to analyze differences in the ways that men and women scientists perceive nuclear risk. Methods. This article examines the risk attitudes and perceptions of a large mail survey sample of men and women scientists. The sample consists of randomly selected members of the biological and physical science sections of the American Association for the Advancement of Science who reside in Colorado and New Mexico. Results. Men scientists tend to see substantially less risk from nuclear technologies than do women scientists, but this difference is not a manifestation of different levels of scientific training or attitudes toward nature, technology, and normative aspects of risk. Gender differences and field of research have an additive effect on risk perceptions, with women scientists and life scientists perceiving greater risks.
Ivan Allen College Contributors:
Citation: Social Science Quarterly. 78. Issue 1. 167 - 176. ISSN 0038-4941.
Related Departments:
  • School of Public Policy