Sociologist John Downer talks about his recent paper, “Disowning Fukushima: Managing the Credibility of Nuclear Reliability Assessment in the Wake of Disaster”. If you’re in the business of producing or relying on quantitative risk assessment, what do you do when an event such as Fukushima occurs? Do you say that the event didn’t happen? Do you claim that the risk assessment wasn’t wrong? Do you say that their risk assessment was wrong, but yours isn’t? Maybe you admit that there was a problem, but claim that everything has now been sorted out.

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