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The effects of earthquake measurement concepts and magnitude anchoring on individuals' perceptions of earthquake risk

Earthquake Spectra

By:
, , and
DOI: 10.1193/1.2099047

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Abstract

The purpose of this research is to explore earthquake risk perceptions in California. Specifically, we examine the risk beliefs, feelings, and experiences of lay, professional, and expert individuals to explore how risk is perceived and how risk perceptions are formed relative to earthquakes. Our results indicate that individuals tend to perceptually underestimate the degree that earthquake (EQ) events may affect them. This occurs in large part because individuals' personal felt experience of EQ events are generally overestimated relative to experienced magnitudes. An important finding is that individuals engage in a process of "cognitive anchoring" of their felt EQ experience towards the reported earthquake magnitude size. The anchoring effect is moderated by the degree that individuals comprehend EQ magnitude measurement and EQ attenuation. Overall, the results of this research provide us with a deeper understanding of EQ risk perceptions, especially as they relate to individuals' understanding of EQ measurement and attenuation concepts. ?? 2005, Earthquake Engineering Research Institute.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
The effects of earthquake measurement concepts and magnitude anchoring on individuals' perceptions of earthquake risk
Series title:
Earthquake Spectra
DOI:
10.1193/1.2099047
Volume
21
Issue:
4
Year Published:
2005
Language:
English
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
Earthquake Spectra
First page:
987
Last page:
1008
Number of Pages:
22