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The real story of risk : adventures in a hazardous world

Author: Glenn E Croston
Publisher: Amherst, N.Y. : Prometheus Books, 2012.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
We live in a world of risk. It waits for us in our refrigerator and surrounds us on the freeway. It's lurking in our arteries and sitting in our 401(k) accounts. Given that we deal with risk on a constant basis, we should be good at it; as it turns out, though, we're not. We're blind to common risks like heart disease (one in five deaths), but we shrink in fear from rare events like shark attacks (one in a million)  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Electronic books
Additional Physical Format: Print version:
Croston, Glenn E., 1964-
Real story of risk.
Amherst, N.Y. : Prometheus Books, 2012
(DLC) 2012023645
(OCoLC)793581736
Material Type: Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Glenn E Croston
ISBN: 9781616146610 1616146613 9781616146610
OCLC Number: 840510716
Description: 1 online resource
Contents: Introduction : the risky business of life --
The evolution of risk : how our ancient biology distorts our dealings with sharks, snakes, and a changing world --
The sea of denial : why rising seas and heart disease are hard to stop --
Suckers for a pretty face : how sex and love lure us to let down our guard --
Why we botch rare risks : the strange story of "the big one", 9/11, Katrina, and deepwater horizon --
The balancing act : the give-and take-game of driving and financial collapses --
Losing control and gaining fear : small aircraft, fear of riding along, and conspiracy theories --
The story of vaccines and autism : why stories rule and statistics don't --
The thing we fear more than death: how our need to belong makes us vulnerable to con men and fearful of podiums --
What do cave diving, naked skydiving, and entrepreneurship have in common? : the delicate dance of risk and reward --
Living in a risky world.
Responsibility: Glenn Croston.

Abstract:

We live in a world of risk. It waits for us in our refrigerator and surrounds us on the freeway. It's lurking in our arteries and sitting in our 401(k) accounts. Given that we deal with risk on a constant basis, we should be good at it; as it turns out, though, we're not. We're blind to common risks like heart disease (one in five deaths), but we shrink in fear from rare events like shark attacks (one in a million) and airplane crashes (one in twenty thousand). What accounts for our poor ability to perceive and react to the risks that really matter? In The Real Story of Risk, biologist Glenn Croston traces our distorted perception of risk back to our ancient ancestors. Starting from an evolutionary perspective, Croston reminds readers that we are all the culmination of a long line of survivors who fought life-and-death threats such as attacks from wild animals, starvation, and disease. The fact that we have covered Earth with seven billion people is a testament to our skill at overcoming these risks. But our spectacular success has also produced our contemporary artificial world with new threats like climate change, chili dogs, and online gambling. Our brains, which evolved to deal with the ancient world, are ill equipped to process the new threats we face. --Amazon.

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