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The Politics of PrecautionRegulating Health, Safety, and Environmental Risks in Europe and the United States$
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David Vogel

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780691124162

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691124162.001.0001

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Public Risk Perceptions and the Preferences of Policy Makers

Public Risk Perceptions and the Preferences of Policy Makers

(p.219) Chapter Seven Public Risk Perceptions and the Preferences of Policy Makers
The Politics of Precaution

David Vogel

Princeton University Press

This chapter explores changes in public opinion regarding the transatlantic politics of risk regulation, as well as the preferences of influential policy makers. Both separately and by their interaction with one another, they have had a critical impact on shaping the divergence in transatlantic regulatory stringency. The chapter presents a broad historical overview of changes in public demands for more stringent risk regulations and the willingness of policy makers to address them. During the second half of the 1980s, the extent and intensity of public concerns about a wide range of health, safety, and environmental risks increased substantially on both sides of the Atlantic. These concerns played a role in a major expansion of consumer and environmental regulation in both the EU and the United States.

Keywords:   transatlantic politics, public opinion, policy makers, risk regulation, public demands, regulatory stringency, EU, United States

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