Coping with Uncertainty in a Complex World
By Ortwin Renn
Routledge – 2008 – 456 pages
Series: Earthscan Risk in Society
'Risk Governance is a tour de force. Every risk manager, every risk analyst, every risk researcher must read this book - it is the demarcation point for all further advances in risk policy and risk research. Renn provides authoritative guidance on how to manage risks based on a definitive synthesis of the research literature. The skill with which he builds practical recommendations from solid science is unprecedented.'
Thomas Dietz, Director, Environmental Science and Policy Program, Michigan State University, USA
'A masterpiece of new knowledge and wisdom with illustrative examples of tested applications to realworld cases. The book is recommendable also to interested students in different disciplines as a timely textbook on 'risk beyond risk'.'
Norio Okada, Full Professor and Director at the Disaster Prevention Research Institute (DPRI), Kyoto University, Japan
'There are classic environmental works such as The Tragedy of the Commons by Hardin, Risk Society by Beck, The Theory of Communicative Action by Habermas, and the seminal volumes by Ostrom on governing the commons. Renn's book fits right into this series of important milestones of environmental studies.'
Jochen Jaeger, Professor at Concordia University, Montreal, Canada
'Risk Governance provides a valuable survey of the whole field of risk and demonstrates how scientific, economic, political and civil society actors can participate in inclusive risk governance.'
Jobst Conrad, Senior Scientist, Social Science Research Center Berlin, Germany
'Renn offers a remarkably fair-minded and systematic approach to bringing together the diverse fields that have something to say about 'risk'. Risk Governance moves us along the path from the noisy, formative stage of thinking about risk to one with a stronger empirical, theoretical, and analytical foundation.'
Baruch Fischhoff, PhD, Howard Heinz University Professor, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, USA
'I cannot describe how impressed I am at the breadth and coherence of Renn's career's work! Written with remarkable clarity and minimal technical jargon… [this] should be required reading in risk courses!'
John Graham, former director of the Harvard Risk Center and former deputy director of the Office of Budget and Management of the Unites States Administration
This book, for the first time, brings together and updates the groundbreaking work of renowned risk theorist and researcher Ortwin Renn, integrating the major disciplinary concepts of risk in the social, engineering and natural sciences. The book opens with the context of risk handling before flowing through the core topics of assessment, evaluation, perception, management and communication, culminating in a look at the transition from risk management to risk governance and a glimpse at a new understanding of risk in (post)modern societies.
'The volume's major strength is its excellent knowledge about and critical evaluation of the classical fields within risk research; risk analysis, risk perception, risk evaluation, risk management and risk communication. Within these fields, there are few researchers that can match Renn's competence.'
'An impressive work almost with the character of an encyclopaedia of recent discussions within the broad, complex and heterogeneous field of risk research. Throughout, novices as well as experienced risk researchers get the opportunity to deepen their understanding of the risk field and of societal efforts towards managing these complexities called risk.'
'This work is invaluable as a reference and will provide many hours of instructive and pleasurable reading. It is highly recommended.'
'[O]n the frontier of thinking about risk'
World Future Review
'The book builds up to an up-to-date and definitely the best treatise on the subject…this is a must for all those who are concerned with the subject of risk in any way and there is no doubt that this is one of the several excellent title full of information that Earthscan has brought out for the public at large.'
Krishna B. Misra, International Performability Engineering
1. Introduction 2. What Is Risk? 3.Pre-assessment 4. Appraisal 5. Risk Perception 6. Risk Evaluation 7. Risk Management 8. Risk Communication 9. Risk Participation 10. The Social and Political Context of Risk Governance 11. Conclusions
Ortwin Renn is Professor and Chair of Environmental Sociology at the State University in Stuttgart, Germany. He is author or co-author of 30 books including Risk, Uncertainty and Rational Action (2001).