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Emerging risks in the 21st century - An agenda for action Introduction and summary

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Every day, people face a variety of risks that may result in damage to what they value: their life, their health, the lives and health of others, their property, or the environment. Some of these risks affect individuals but have only an isolated impact on society - car accidents are an example. Others, however, may be on a much larger scale and their effects may spread much further. This report is concerned with the latter, more specifically, with those risks that affect the systems on which society depends - health, transport, environment, telecommunications, etc. Five categories of such risks are addressed: natural disasters, industrial accidents, infectious diseases, terrorism, and food safety. The report does not deal with systemic risks to markets, notably to financial markets, although some aspects of financial systems are considered in the analysis.

Page Count: 21

Document Type: Review Article

Publication date: April 1, 2003

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