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IBS Speaker Series: Translating Risk Information Into Protective Action: Examining Household Response to Information About Earthquake Hazards and Risk
April 11 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Speaker: Carson MacPherson-Krutsky
Abstract: Natural hazards have been a part of the landscape since its existence, but they are becoming more devastating as they intersect with growing populations and as climate change increases their frequency and intensity. As these changes occur, the need to understand how to reduce disaster impacts becomes paramount. Despite growing concern and increasing costs of disasters over the past decade, household preparedness, which is at the foundation of disaster readiness, has seen little to no improvement. We adopt the Protective Action Decision Model (PADM; Lindell & Perry, 2004; 2012) as a framework to investigate what motivates households to prepare and examine how effective risk communication strategies are at increasing awareness and preparedness. Here we find information seeking behavior to be the strongest influence not only on preparedness, but other PADM factors as well, such as intentions to prepare, feelings (positive and negative) about earthquake threat, knowledge of protective recommendations, and risk perception. Additionally, we find significant gaps exist in terms of public understanding of earthquake hazards and what to do during an earthquake. This research expands our understanding of the factors that influence household preparedness and highlights specific areas for improvement.
Bio: Carson MacPherson-Krutsky is a research associate at the Natural Hazards Center and at Boise State University sharing her positions equally. She is also the co-founder of the Boise State Hazard and Climate Resilience Institute whose mission is to connect researchers, students, and community partners to collaboratively address community resilience research and practical needs. In addition, MacPherson-Krutsky is the co-owner of HazardReady, LLC, a company that provides personalized risk and preparedness information via easy to use websites. She holds a bachelor’s from Western Washington University, a master’s from University of Montana, and a PhD from Boise State University.
Her research incorporates social science methods to investigate what motivates people to take protective actions and to assess which types of risk communication styles are most effective at motivating people to prepare. MacPherson-Krutsky is also interested in creating multimedia products (e.g., infographics, websites, videos, workshops) that convey complex or technical information in engaging and user-friendly ways.