818050 Methods and concepts of risk sciences I

Semester hours
Lecturer (assistant)
Kromp, Wolfgang
Offered in
Wintersemester 2021/22
Languages of instruction


This course consists of discussions and lectures on different aspects of risk sciences. Risks of the type "low probability - high consequences" are in the focus, and among these especially collective risks that affect large parts of or human society as a whole (as opposed to individual risks that affect individuals or smaller groups, such as e.g. companies). The question of values is closely related. In this context interrelations between risks, cascading risks etc. are of interest. Examples of the risks addressed are natural and technical catastrophes, biodiversity loss, climate change, epidemics, hunger, war and terror and increasing resources scarcity on the one hand, the increase of the world population and decreasing equity on the other.
Assessing this type of risk requires special methods of treating complex systems, as will be made plausible using Fredric Vesters bio-cybernetic approach and sensitivity model. In addition risky, non-sustainable and non-resilient behavioural patterns will be analysed using interdisciplinary approaches based on insights gained from research on evolution of man and his next proxies. Current examples: Risks resulting from the use of computer- and internet based informal communication media or worldwide migration triggered by one of more of the above mentioned factors

Previous knowledge expected

Objective (expected results of study and acquired competences)

Increase of knowledge and understanding of terms, definitions and parameters used in risk sciences, as well as insights into the possibilities and limits of the assessment of risks and of methods to reduce risks. Insight into the interdisciplinary nature of the risk concept and its targeting on man.
You can find more details like the schedule or information about exams on the course-page in BOKUonline.