Technological Disasters Essay by Research Group

Technological Disasters
A discussion of how people are likely to react to disasters caused by human technology.
# 27514 | 2,387 words | 5 sources | MLA | 2002 | US
Published on Jun 10, 2003 in Psychology (Behaviorism) , Environmental Studies (General)

$19.95 Buy and instantly download this paper now


This paper attempts to understand how people respond to technological disasters as opposed to natural disasters such as hurricanes and earthquakes. It examines two specific instances of such a catastrophe, the Exxon Valdez wreck and the Chernobyl nuclear reactor meltdown. It evaluates the psychological aspect of the way in which people prepare for catastrophes since technological disasters are human created and we understand when faced with them that we are (at least as a species if not as individuals) responsible for their occurrence. It looks at how these two specific incidents were chosen because they were thoroughly witnessed and documented, allowing us to examine how individuals, communities and social institutions " including governments " have responded in the case of such accidents. It evaluates how both of these disasters were embedded in political, social and economic contexts and how they would not have occurred if the historical events leading up to them had been different.

From the Paper:

"Susan Cutter, in her book Living with Risk, suggests that public response to technological hazards is often ambiguous, resulting in over-reaction, under-reaction, and often no reaction at all. People have learned to prepare for and how to respond to tornadoes (for example). They know where tornadoes may be expected to occur, during what time of the year, what kind of weather produces them, how they sound when they are approaching. People have learned what an individual can do to increase his or her chances of survival, including having access to an underground shelter and seek that shelter rapidly when bad weather threatens."

Cite this Essay:

APA Format

Technological Disasters (2003, June 10) Retrieved October 04, 2022, from

MLA Format

"Technological Disasters" 10 June 2003. Web. 04 October. 2022. <>