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Authors: Crescimbene, Massimo* 
La Longa, Federica* 
Camassi, Romano* 
Pino, Nicola Alessandro* 
Peruzza, Laura* 
Cerbara, Loredana* 
Crescimbene, Cristiana* 
Title: Data on Seismic Risk Perception in Italy
Issue Date: 16-Sep-2013
Keywords: Risk perception, Seismic hazard, Hazard communication, Seismic risk.
Subject Classification04. Solid Earth::04.06. Seismology::04.06.11. Seismic risk 
Abstract: Risks perception involves complex cognitive processes of collecting, selecting and interpreting signals about events, activities or technologies that may have consequences on us, even if they are unpredictable, and their impact is uncertain. In the natural sciences ‘risk’ means the probability distribution of adverse effects, but the everyday use of ‘risk’ has different connotations (Renn, 2008), and the two terms, hazards and risk, are often used interchangeably by the public. Within the social sciences however the terminology of ‘risk perception’ has become the conventional standard (Slovic, 1987). A theory that offers an integrative, as well as empirically valid, approach in understanding and explaining risk perception is still missing. To understand the perception of risk is necessary to consider several areas: social, psychological, cultural frames, and their interactions. Among the various researches in the international context on the perception of natural hazards and risks, the approach using the method of semantic differential seems to be promising (Osgood, C.E., Suci, G., & Tannenbaum, P. 1957, The measurement of meaning. Urbana, IL: University of Illinois Press). We set up a test on seismic risk perception in Italy, based on the semantic differential. Opposite adjectives or terms are confronted on a Likert’s scale of seven points. The test consists in an informative part and six sections respectively dedicated to: hazard; vulnerability (home and workplace); exposed value (with reference to population and territory); seismic risk in general; risk information and their sources; comparison between seismic risk and other natural hazards. The test allows to obtain the perception scores for seismic hazard, exposed values, and vulnerability; then, these scores can be put in relation with the scientific knowledge, to check awareness and resiliency of the society. The first survey took place in Italy from January to June 2013, in the frame of the activities funded by the DPC-INGV S2 project ( Collected data will be discussed at regional scale. The improvement of our understanding on the perception of seismic risk would allow us in planning more effective information initiatives and in developing specific educational projects for risk mitigation.
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