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Title: Why take the risk? Exploring the psychosocial determinants of floodwater driving
Contributor(s): Benjamin, Shauntelle  (author); Parsons, Melissa  (author)orcid ; Apthorp, Deborah  (author)orcid ; Lykins, Amy D  (author)orcid 
Publication Date: 2022-07-19
Open Access: Yes
DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2022.913790
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As anthropogenic climate change progresses, there is an increasing need for individuals to make appropriate decisions regarding their approach to extreme weather events. Natural hazards are involuntary risk environments (e.g., flooded roads); interaction with them cannot be avoided (i.e., a decision must be made about how to engage). While the psychological and sociocultural predictors of engagement with voluntary risks (i.e., risk situations that are sought out) are well-documented, less is known about the factors that predict engagement with involuntary risk environments. This exploratory study assessed whether mental health (depression, anxiety, and stress symptoms), personality traits, and cultural worldviews combine to predict engagement with involuntary risk, using the situation of floodwater driving. An Australian sample (N = 235) was assessed via questionnaire and scenario measures. Results were analyzed in a binomial logistic regression assessing which individual factors predicted decision-making in a proxy floodwater driving scenario. Agreeableness and gender were individually significant predictors of floodwater driving intention, and four factors (named "affect," "progressiveness," "insightfulness," and "purposefulness") were derived from an exploratory factor analysis using the variables of interest, though only two ("progressiveness" and "insightfulness") predicted floodwater driving intention in an exploratory binomial logistic regression. The findings highlight the need for further research into the differences between voluntary and involuntary risk. The implication of cultural worldviews and personality traits in interaction with mental health indicators on risk situations is discussed.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Source of Publication: Frontiers in Psychology, v.13, p. 1-13
Publisher: Frontiers Research Foundation
Place of Publication: Switzerland
ISSN: 1664-1078
Fields of Research (FoR) 2020: 520503 Personality and individual differences
520402 Decision making
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO) 2020: 190103 Social impacts of climate change and variability
190508 Understanding the impact of natural hazards caused by climate change
280121 Expanding knowledge in psychology
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: C1 Refereed Article in a Scholarly Journal
Appears in Collections:Journal Article
School of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences
School of Psychology

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