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Risk Communication. A Handbook for Communicating Environmental, Safety, and Health Risks. 5th Edition - Product Image

Risk Communication. A Handbook for Communicating Environmental, Safety, and Health Risks. 5th Edition

  • ID: 2330926
  • September 2013
  • 416 Pages
  • John Wiley and Sons Ltd

A fully updated handbook on effectively communicating environmental, safety, and health risks

Written by two well-known risk practitioners with over twenty-five years' experience in the field, this fully updated Fifth Edition of Risk Communication: A Handbook for Communicating Environmental, Safety, and Health Risks offers sound, scientific research with practical, hands-on advice for those in the public and private sectors.

Highly accessible and easy to understand, this must-read includes real-life examples of such headline-making events as the tsunami and radiation release in Japan in 2011, the BP oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010, and extreme weather events, along with the lessons learned from them. It offers new chapters on public health campaigns, and on the use and effectiveness of social media for risk communication purposes.

Risk Communication is divided into five self-contained parts:
- Part I provides background information for understanding the basic theories and practices of risk communication
- Part II explains how to plan a risk communication effort
- Part III describes how to put risk communication into action
- Part IV discusses how to evaluate risk communication efforts, including techniques for measuring success
- Part V highlights special cases in risk communication, including disasters and other emergencies, international risk communication, and public health campaigns

An ideal introduction to the field, this book is also a welcome reference for those involved in communicating environmental, safety, and health risks in government, industry, and academia.

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LIST OF FIGURES xv

LIST OF TABLES xvii

PREFACE xix

ABOUT THE AUTHORS xxi

1 INTRODUCTION 1

To Begin 2

The Risk Communication Process 5

Audiences, Situations, and Purposes 6

References 7

PART I UNDERSTANDING RISK COMMUNICATION

2 APPROACHES TO COMMUNICATING RISK 11

Communication Process Approach 12

National Research Council’s Approach 12

Mental Models Approach 13

Crisis Communication Approach 14

Convergence Communication Approach 15

Three-Challenge Approach 15

Social Constructionist Approach 16

Hazard Plus Outrage Approach 17

Mental Noise Approach 17

Social Network Contagion Approach 18

Social Amplification of Risk Approach 18

Social Trust Approach 19

Evolutionary Theory Approach 20

Extended Parallel Process Model Approach 20

Summary 21

References 21

Additional Resources 22

3 LAWS THAT MANDATE RISK COMMUNICATION 23

Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act 24

Executive Order 12898, Environmental Justice in Minority Populations 25

Executive Order 13045, Reduce Environmental Health and Safety Risks to Children 26

Food and Drug Administration Regulations on Prescription Drug Communication 28

National Environmental Policy Act 28

Natural Resource Damage Assessment 30

Occupational Safety and Health Act 30

Resource Conservation and Recovery Act 32

Risk Management Program Rule 32

Privacy Rule 32

Other Government Inducements 33

International Standards 33

North American Standards 34

Grants 34

Summary 35

References 35

Additional Resources 35

4 CONSTRAINTS TO EFFECTIVE RISK COMMUNICATION 37

Constraints on the Communicator 37

Organizational Constraints 38

Emotional Constraints 44

Constraints from the Audience 45

Hostility and Outrage 45

Panic and Denial 48

Apathy 48

Mistrust of Risk Assessment 49

Disagreements on the Acceptable Magnitude of Risk 50

Lack of Faith in Science and Institutions 50

Learning Difficulties 51

Constraints for Both Communicator and Audience 51

Stigma 52

Stability of the Knowledge Base 52

Summary 53

References 53

Additional Resources 55

5 ETHICAL ISSUES 57

Social Ethics 58

The Sociopolitical Environment’s Influence 58

The Use of the Risk Idiom 60

Fairness of the Risk 61

Consequences of Multiple Meanings 62

The Issue of Stigma 63

Organizational Ethics 63

Legitimacy of Representation 64

Designation of Primary Audience 65

Releasing Information 66

Attitude toward Compliance with Regulations 67

Personal Ethics 68

Using Persuasion 68

The Role of the Communicator 68

Organizational Ethics or Personal Ethics? 69

Summary 69

References 69

Additional Resources 70

6 PRINCIPLES OF RISK COMMUNICATION 71

Principles of Process 72

Know Your Communication Limits and Purpose 72

Whenever Possible, Pretest Your Message 73

Communicate Early, Often, and Fully 73

Remember That Perception Is Reality 74

Principles of Presentation 74

Know Your Audience 75

Do Not Limit Yourself to One Form or One Method 75

Simplify Language and Presentation, Not Content 75

Be Objective, Not Subjective 75

Communicate Honestly, Clearly, and Compassionately 76

Listen and Deal with Specific Concerns 76

Convey the Same Information to All Segments of Your Audience 77

Deal with Uncertainty 77

Principles for Comparing Risks 78

Use Analogies, but Do Not Trivialize 78

Use Ranges 79

Compare with Standards 79

Compare with Other Estimates of the Same Risk 80

Compare Traits 80

Do Not Compare Risks with Different Levels of Associated Outrage 80

Explain Reductions in Magnitude 81

Summary 81

References 81

Additional Resources 82

PART II PLANNING THE RISK COMMUNICATION EFFORT

7 DETERMINE PURPOSE AND OBJECTIVES 85

Factors That Influence Purpose and Objectives 86

Legal Issues 86

Organizational Requirements 86

The Risk Itself 87

Audience Requirements 88

Checklist for Determining Purpose and Objectives 89

Reference 90

Additional Resources 90

8 ANALYZE YOUR AUDIENCE 91

Begin with Purpose and Objectives 92

Choose a Level of Analysis 93

Determine Key Audience Characteristics 95

Determine How to Find Audience Analysis Information 95

Incorporate Audience Analysis Information into Risk Communication Efforts 101

Checklist for Analyzing Your Audience 103

References 103

Additional Resources 104

9 DEVELOP YOUR MESSAGE 105

Common Pitfalls 106

Information People Want 107

Mental Models 108

Message Mapping and Message Development Templates 111

Health Risk Communication 111

Crisis Communication 114

Checklist for Developing Messages 115

References 115

Additional Resource 116

10 DETERMINE THE APPROPRIATE METHODS 117

Information Materials 117

Visual Representation of Risk 118

Face-to-Face Communication 120

Working with the News Media 121

Stakeholder Participation 122

Technology-Assisted Communication 123

Social Media 125

Checklist for Determining Appropriate Methods 126

Additional Resources 127

11 SET A SCHEDULE 129

Legal Requirements 129

Organizational Requirements 130

The Scientific Process 130

Ongoing Activities 131

Audience Needs 131

Reference 132

Checklist for Setting Schedules 133

12 DEVELOP A COMMUNICATION PLAN 135

What to Include in a Communication Plan 136

Developing Risk Communication Strategies 138

Storyboarding as a Planning Tool 138

Communication Planning Using the Comprehensive Environmental

Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) Approach 139

Using an Audience Focus 140

Strategic Planning for Risk Communication 142

Checklist for Developing a Communication Plan 143

References 143

Additional Resources 143

PART III PUTTING RISK COMMUNICATION INTO ACTION

13 INFORMATION MATERIALS 147

Constructing Information Materials 147

Information to Be Included 147

Organizing Material for Information Materials 150

Language for Information Materials 150

Narrative Style in Information Materials 152

Guidelines for Specific Types of Information Materials 153

Newsletters 153

Pamphlets, Booklets, and Fact Sheets 154

Posters, Advertisements, and Displays 154

Articles 155

Technical Reports 156

Checklist for Information Materials 157

References 158

Additional Resources 158

14 VISUAL REPRESENTATIONS OF RISKS 159

Design Visuals for Specific Audiences and Uses 160

Match the Visual Portrayal to the Information to be Conveyed 162

Pretest Graphics with Those Who Will Use Them 164

Using Visuals to Personalize Risk Information 166

Comparing Risks in Visual Formats 167

Static versus Interactive Visuals 170

Depicting Probability and Uncertainty 172

Presenting Probability 172

Presenting Uncertainty 176

Probability plus Uncertainty 177

Warning Labels 180

Consider Using Action Levels 183

Ethical Portrayal of Risk Information 183

Using Visual Information in Group Decision Making 187

Checklist for Visual Representation of Risk 188

References 188

Additional Resources 190

15 FACE-TO-FACE COMMUNICATION 193

Constructing Face-to-Face Messages 194

Choose the Appropriate Spokesperson 194

Give the Audience Something to Take Away 197

Reinforce Your Message with Visual Aids 197

Speak in the Language of the Audience 197

Do Not Promise What You Cannot Deliver 197

Guidelines for Specific Types of Face-to-Face Communication 198

Speaking Engagements 198

Speakers Bureaus 199

Tours and Demonstrations 200

Video Presentations 201

Audience Interviews 203

Information Fairs 203

Training 204

Checklist for Face-to-Face Communication 205

References 206

Additional Resource 206

16 WORKING WITH THE NEWS MEDIA 207

The Roles of the News Media in Risk Communication 207

News Media Contrasted with Other Stakeholders 209

Productive Interaction, Not Polarization 209

Understanding “Cultural” Differences 210

The News Media Are Event Focused 211

Certain Kinds of Risks Get More Coverage 211

Journalistic Independence and Deadlines Affect Content 211

The Need for Balance Invites Opposing Views 212

Information Is Condensed, Simplified, and Personalized 212

Guidelines for Interacting with the News Media 213

Develop Relationships with Local and Regional News Media Representatives 213

Know When to Approach Media Representatives or When They May Approach You 214

Prepare Messages and Materials Carefully 214

Know Where to Draw the Line 216

Put Your Message in Terms That the Reporter’s Audience Can Understand 216

Put the Risk in Perspective 217

Respect the Reporter’s Deadlines 218

Maintain Ethical Standards of Disclosure 218

Take Action When Inaccurate or Misleading Material Is Published or Aired 219

Evaluate News Media Coverage 219

Using Technology 220

Distribution Services 220

Video and Audio News Releases 221

Public Service Announcements 221

Telebriefings 222

Social Media 223

Checklist for Working with the News Media 223

References 224

Additional Resources 225

17 STAKEHOLDER PARTICIPATION 227

Requirements for Stakeholder Participation 228

Organizational Requirements for Successful Stakeholder Participation 228

Stakeholder Requirements for Successful Participation 229

Guidelines for Specific Types of Stakeholder Participation Activities 230

The Formal Hearing 231

Group Interactions 232

Interactions Involving Risk Assessment 237

Interactions Involving Decision Making 238

Interactions Involving Risk Management 243

Evaluating Stakeholder Participation Based on Your Situation 245

Checklist for Stakeholder Participation 246

References 248

Additional Resources 249

18 TECHNOLOGY-ASSISTED COMMUNICATION 251

Choosing Technology-Based Applications 252

Workplace Risk Communication 253

Computer-Based Training 253

Informing Employees about Risks 255

Web-Delivered and Stand-Alone Multimedia Programs 257

Online Multimedia Tools 258

Mobile Platforms 259

Web and Satellite Broadcasts 260

Traditional Electronic Forums 262

Interactive Multimedia Programs in Public Places 263

Technology in Care Communication 265

Technology in Consensus Communication 269

Websites 269

Local Area Networks, Extranets, and Bulletin Boards 270

Tracking and Analyzing Comments and Responses 271

Facilitating Group Decision Making 272

Technology in Crisis Communication 273

Websites, Wired, and Wireless Technologies 273

Emergency Planning and Training Tools 274

Checklist for Technology-Assisted Communication 278

References 278

Additional Resources 279

19 SOCIAL MEDIA 281

General Principles on Participating in Social Media to Communicate Risk 282

Determining Audience for Social Media 283

Organizational Barriers to Social Media Adoption 284

Sharing Content via Social Media 287

Engaging with Stakeholders 288

Monitoring Changes in Perception via Social Media 289

Guidelines for Specific Types of Social Media 290

Social Networking Sites 290

Microblogging 292

Blogging and Podcasts 293

Video-, Image-, and File-Sharing Sites 294

Mapping 294

Mobile Phones 295

Evaluating Social Media Effectiveness 295

Checklist for Social Media 296

References 296

Additional Resources 297

PART IV EVALUATING RISK COMMUNICATION EFFORTS

20 EVALUATION OF RISK COMMUNICATION EFFORTS 301

Why Evaluate Risk Communication Efforts? 301

The Meaning of Success 302

Types of Evaluations 304

Conducting the Evaluation 306

Checklist for Evaluating Risk Communication Efforts 308

References 309

Additional Resources 310

PART V SPECIAL CASES IN RISK COMMUNICATION

21 EMERGENCY RISK COMMUNICATION 313

Understanding Emergency Risk Communication 314

Emotions and Public Actions 315

Credibility and Trust 316

Planning for the Unexpected 318

Preparing Your Organization 318

Teaming with Other Organizations 322

Working with Communities in Advance 323

Determining Appropriate Communication Methods 324

Developing an Emergency Risk Communication Plan 328

Communicating during an Emergency 333

Emergency Operation Centers 336

Working with the Media in an Emergency 337

Hotlines 340

Communicating after an Emergency 342

Checklist for Emergency Risk Communication 344

References 345

Additional Resources 348

22 INTERNATIONAL RISK COMMUNICATION 349

Recognize the Similarities 350

Account for Cultural Differences 350

Look for “Your” Risk in Other Countries 352

Plan for Cross-Country Communication 353

Checklist for International Risk Communication 355

References 356

Additional Resources 357

23 PUBLIC HEALTH CAMPAIGNS 359

Understand Your Goals 360

Use Research to Design Campaigns 360

Use Multiple Methods to Reach People 361

News Media 361

Paid Placements and Independent Coverage 362

Online Interventions and Social Media 363

Other Methods 364

Evaluate Success 364

Checklist for Public Health Campaigns 366

References 366

Additional Resources 367

RESOURCES 369

General Risk Communication Resources 369

Environmental Risk Communication Resources 370

Safety Risk Communication Resources 371

Health Risk Communication Resources 371

Care Communication Resources 372

Consensus Communication Resources 372

Crisis Communication Resources 373

GLOSSARY 375

INDEX 379

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"Even though this is written specifically for an American audience, it is a proper handbook with many checklists, references and examples which should help anyone who may need to communicate risk to do so in an organised and effective manner."  (RoSPA Occupational Safety & Health Journal, 1 February 2014)

Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown
Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown

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