We describe the results of a study to determine the synthetic-biology risk perceptions of a large and diverse sample of Americans (N = 1,500). The survey found that hierarchical, conservative, and highly religious individuals - one who normally are skeptical of claims of environmental risks (including those relating to global warming) - are the most concerned about synthetic biology risks. We offer an interpretation that identifies how selective risk-skepticism and risk-sensitivity can convey a cultural commitment to traditional forms of authority.
GW Paper Series
GWU Law School Public Law Research Paper No. 446; GWU Legal Studies Research Paper No. 446
Braman, Donald; Mandel, Gregory N.; and Kahan, Dan M., "Cultural Cognition and Synthetic Biology Risk Perceptions: A Preliminary Analysis" (2008). GW Law Faculty Publications & Other Works. 282.