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SBE 2020: Submission Detail

ID Number: 143
Title: A Challenge Question: Understanding, Analysis, and Management of Catastrophic Risks
Lead Author: Ericson, Richard E.
Abstract: This paper proposes a long-term SBE research focus on catastrophic risk and fundamental uncertainty about large-impact, low probability events, the human behavior they (and their anticipation) triggers, and the substantially unpredictable consequences of their interaction with that behavior. Current paradigms in SBE sciences provide a foundation, yet remain still largely inadequate, for analysis of the complex systems that evolve around and in response to such events and reactions. The paper argues that better analyses, predictions, and prescriptions in such circumstances can arise from collaboration among SBE disciplines focused on this core issue, and points to some directions relevant to that analysis in several core SBE disciplines, including areas of collaboration with natural scientists (coupled natural-human systems). In particular, collaboration among economists, sociologists, psychologists, and geographers, each able to approach the complex issues from a different perspective, is apt to be most fruitful in clarifying both the science behind these issues and appropriate policy responses to the problems that they pose. The paper briefly touches on a number of new directions in each of these SBE disciplines, indicating how they might contribute to a better understanding of this encompassing challenge to the social, behavioral, and economic sciences.
PDF: Ericson_Richard_143.pdf

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