NEHRP Clearinghouse

Limited Knowledge and Insurance Protection: Implications for Natural Hazard Policy.
Kunreuther, H.; Ginsberg, R.; Miller, L.; Sagi, P.; Slovic, P.
National Science Foundation, Washington, D.C. Research Applied to National Needs., March 1977, 493 p.
This study examines the factors that induce individuals to protect themselves voluntarily against the consequences of low probability events such as floods or earthquakes. The authors interviewed 2,055 homeowners residing in 43 areas in 13 states subject to coastal or riverine flooding and 1,066 in 18 earthquake-prone areas of California. Also, controlled laboratory experiments related to insurance purchase decisions were conducted. Data collected from these sources enabled this study to focus on: (1) how well various models explain choice under uncertainty in the predisaster period; (2) what role insurance can play in enabling individuals to process information and undertake appropriate measures for hazard mitigation; (3) what information and attitudes homeowners have regarding hazard mitigation and disaster relief measures; and (4) the physical characteristics of flood- and earthquake-prone areas and the economic and sociological profiles of homeowners residing in these areas.
Floods; Regions; Attitude surveys; Data acquisition; Earthquakes; Decision making; Earthquake prone areas; Interviews; California; Homeowners; Insurance; Consumer affairs; Disasters; Flood prone areas