Global support for communities in making sense of risk

What is risk know-how?

Risk know-how helps communities to navigate risk information and assess benefits and trade-offs within their own context.

Having risk know-how equips people to weigh up claims and data about risk in the way that works best for their circumstances and the discussions they are having in their communities. This site is aimed at people who find themselves at the heart of such discussions and involved in helping others to navigate risk information – risk know-how practitioners. What did they need to know to make sense of risk statistics on pregnancy? Why are grain farmers in their region disagreeing about likely loss of rainfall? How likely are life vests to save lives at sea?

It offers a framework drawn from real world experiences, from conservation in Kenya to midwifery in the UK. As community practitioners around the world add their experiences, insights and challenges, the framework will be developed alongside them to create a supportive practitioner platform and resources.

Risk know-how framework

Risk know-how is about informed decision-making. Every risk entails a trade-off between the benefits and costs of action or inaction, and we weigh these up to make a decision.

We wanted to know what it means for a community to have risk know-how. Their experiences are at the heart of this initiative.

Everyday community leaders around the world work with their populations to clarify risk information. Working with such practitioners alongside key figures in statistics, risk literacy and communication, we have identified elements of understanding risk that have the strongest practical application in day-to-day life.

Our discussions and interactions have led to the development of a practical framework for risk know-how. The framework includes descriptions of both, what communities with risk know-how can do, and how they can achieve the outcomes that are best suited to their context.

The framework is not just a source of information. It is also a space for people to share their own experiences and learnings. Over the next 12 months it will continue to develop through use and feedback.

"As an outdoor educator, we make decisions about when we need to seek shelter, because of a thunderstorm or the cold, for example. Sometimes you face the same conditions but make different decisions, because it matters how young the group is, how large a group you oversee, and how quickly you can get to shelter. What feels like the right decision one day might feel too risky a different day."

Sarah Whitaker

Forest kindergarten director

USA

World 100 community risk practitioners

We had discussions with people in communities around the world about what it is to have risk know-how, as well as some of the challenges they face and the insights they have developed. Here we feature those community practitioners who have been helping their communities to navigate risk information and make informed decisions in real-world contexts.

News

About us

Risk know-how is an international partnership between Sense about Science and Lloyd’s Register Foundation, with support from colleagues at the Institute for the Public Understanding of Risk at the National University of Singapore.

At the heart of this initiative is a commitment to facilitating a meaningful dialogue on the gaps between the public’s expectations and actual experiences of risk, enabling an evidence-based approach to policy design and interventions.

Sense About Science
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Risk is central to Sense About Science’s mission to equip people to engage with evidence and to empower them to weigh up risks and benefits. From nearly 20 years of experience in engaging communities, media and policymakers in risk issues, Sense about Science is confident that risk literacy needs to be experience-driven and shaped by the people who are trying to make their communities safer.

Lloyds Register Foundation
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Public understanding of risk is a strategic priority for the Lloyd’s Register Foundation, which curates some of the most extensive and original data about risk and, with the World Risk Poll, risk perception.

NUS National University of Singapore Lloyd
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The Institute for the Public Understanding of Risk at the National University of Singapore, IPUR seeks to narrow the gap between people’s perceptions and real-world risks by undertaking research on the scientific understanding of risk and its practical application through a multi-disciplinary approach.

Sense About Science
L

Risk is central to Sense About Science’s mission to equip people to engage with evidence and to empower them to weigh up risks and benefits. From nearly 20 years of experience in engaging communities, media and policymakers in risk issues, Sense about Science is confident that risk literacy needs to be experience-driven and shaped by the people who are trying to make their communities safer.

Lloyds Register Foundation
L

Public understanding of risk is a strategic priority for the Lloyd’s Register Foundation, which curates some of the most extensive and original data about risk and, with the World Risk Poll, risk perception.

NUS National University of Singapore Lloyd
L

The Institute for the Public Understanding of Risk at the National University of Singapore, IPUR seeks to narrow the gap between people’s perceptions and real-world risks by undertaking research on the scientific understanding of risk and its practical application through a multi-disciplinary approach.

Our team

RISK Team Padmini Ravi

Padmini is responsible for overall management of the risk know-how initiative at Sense about Science.

 

PADMINI RAVI

Project Manager

RISK Team Leonor Sierra

Leonor is a Sense about Science Associate helping to develop the risk know-how framework.

 

LEONOR SIERRA

Associate – Sense about Science

RISK Team Sam Shingles

Sam coordinates the interaction and engagement with community risk practitioners.

 

SAM SHINGLES

Community Engagement Coordinator

Get in touch

If you are helping your community navigate risk information, tell us about your experience. We would love to have a conversation with you.

For questions or comments on Risk know-how, email us.

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