Expert knowledge is information that has been ‘created’ by renowned individuals such as researchers and scientific individuals. This information is normally a product of quantitative data which has been analysed to show patterns and characteristics in the data.
The use of expert knowledge and quantitative data applied to decision making and risk is in the use of helmets .A study showed that there was an 85% risk reduction for cyclists who wore helmets to have head injuries. A study also showed that motorists would drive closer to a cyclist wearing a helmet, and would give a cyclist not wearing a helmet a wider birth when passing
In February 2005 the Government Environment Agency run tests in an allotment for toxic substances, it came back that the levels were too high for human consumtion.The allotments were closed for a long time, then a second test was carried out which stated the toxic levels were acceptable for human consumtion. Here we have an example of expert knowledge caused by government intervention, which resulted in the risk factor being taken away from us, then given back to us on the whim of two tests carried out by a government agency. It caused some people never to go back to their allotments, because their choice had been taken away from them in the first place. The risk factor i.e. eating the vegetables grown in the allotments was incorrectly taken away from the allotment owners. The [EA] should have consulted with the allotment owners from the beginning, the facts put infront of them, and let them decide what course of action to take and the.
An area where expert and lay knowledge frequently do battle is the health care and dietary advice. Expert knowledge on dietary advice is widely obtainable; however the public knowledge shared amid these individuals inclines to be remotely different. I.e, expert knowledge which is accessible states that we require a fraction of fat in diet. But other reviews state that any overweight is detrimental for ones wellbeing. Be true both methodical statements are correct, one does need a certain amount of fat to have a healthy regime, there are a few forms of fat which could lead to you being at risk of coronary disease. But the conflicting ideas that you should cut fat out or some fat is good for one’s diet .Makes you think about the credibility of these expert sources and peoples lay understanding of diet. These conflicting sources take away the risk factor out of healthy eating and leave you with confusion. Is it best to eat what you deem to be good for you, at least there will be no confusion?
But people are used to scare tactics by the so called expert knowledge people working for the Government. They absorb the risk factor and choose a mid-point of the conflicting evidences and accept that as a suitable level of risk.
The public credibility of expert knowledge is an important factor in modern society, which has become a ‘Risk Society’ an idea put forth by [ In the “Risk Society,” science, the main institute for categorising and evaluating risks, is engulfed into an unsustainable situation. Through taking part in this one old-fashioned