Risk Perception and Risk Governance in East Asia

Thursday, July 17, 2014: 6:00 PM
Room: 304
Oral Presentation
Sang-Jin HAN , sociology, Seoul National University, Seoul, South Korea
Qiang LI , Tsinghua University, Beijing, China
The aim of this paper is to examine salient characteristics of the public perception of risks in Beijing, Seoul, and Tokyo as capital cities of three major countries of East Asia and to explore multiple pathways to reflexive risk governance in East Asia as an important condition for second modern transformation. Based on the 2012 survey data of citizens from Beijing, Seoul, and Tokyo over the issues of risk society, risk governance, the future of East Asia, and second modernity, the authors will show 1) the overall consensus among East Asian citizens about the consequences of modernization and the future development; 2) the commonalities and differences in the public perception of risks in three capital cities; 3) the major factors which may shape a concrete paradigm of risk governance in each country. Reflexive risk governance at issue is second-modern in that state alone can no longer be able to adequately perceive and manage complex risks citizens face today, requiring a partnership though its forms are various. The authors will thus examine the interactive patterns among government, experts, NGOs, and citizens in forming risk governance, drawing particular attention to the evolving procedures in which the bottom-up inputs from citizens and the extent of institutional responsiveness are linked together to produce efficient policy outcomes. The authors will argue that it is necessary for East Asia to delineate and combine two dimensions of risk governance, that is, local and cosmopolitan, depending on the types of risks to be regulated. In so doing, the authors want to demonstrate the overall commonalities of risk governance in East Asia, on the one hand, and specific characteristics involved in each country, on the other.