Technisches Risiko und soziales Risiko : Überlegungen zur Risikoethik

Den Anstoß für die jüngere philosophische Auseinandersetzung mit Risiko gab die Entwicklung neuer Technologien in der zweiten Hälfte des 20. Jahrhunderts. Insbesondere in letzter Zeit sind neue Risiken wie der anthropogene Klimawandel oder Finanzkrisen in das Zentrum des Forschungsinteresses gerückt. Der Artikel argumentiert, dass letztere wesentlich sozialer Natur sind und sich daher in entscheidenden Hinsichten von technologischen Risiken unterscheiden.
In the wake of new technological developments, philosophers have been increasingly interested in issues surrounding risk over recent decades. The general philosophical perspective on risk has, thus, been shaped by the problems of the technological domain. While this perspective has advanced risk research significantly, it has also led to an overstretching attribution of a technical understanding of risk to such risks that are different in kind. Among these other risks we focus in our article on social risks and argue that framing a risk one way or the other has major repercussions for the choice between different risk prevention strategies. In the first section of this article, we provide a general account of risk and of the distinct nature of technical and social risks. After introducing this conceptual distinction, we put forward an argument establishing the claim that each type of risk is linked internally to specific forms of risk prevention, which differ considerably from each other. Throughout, we illustrate the rationale with the example of anthropogenic climate change and hold that it should indeed be understood as being primarily a social risk. In the last section, we delineate avenues of future research that come into perspective when using the concept of social risk.
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