Public debate about the acceptability of genetically modified organisms in the production of food and feed has included controversy about risks of harming human health and/or the natural environment. Consumer and public response to the risks can be volatile, as manifested in some of the extreme protest actions in Europe. These reactions are due, in part, to strong judgments formed from memorable events. Such judgments are common when individuals do not have a good understanding of risks. Economic and psychological theories of decision making provide understanding of how these judgments are formed, how they might evolve, and what can be done to influence them. Public dialogue and action must account for cognitive difficulties assessing risks to stimulate public evaluation that gives full consideration to the benefits and cost of genetically modified organisms.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Social Psychology
- Cultural Studies
- Sociology and Political Science
- Social Sciences(all)