Threats in a transforming living environment as a factor of social risks: forecasting and regulation

Threats in a transforming living environment as a factor of social risks:
forecasting and regulation

Zubok Yu.A.

Dr. Sci. (Soc.), Prof., Head of the Center, Institute of Socio-Political Research, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, Russia

Chuprov V.I.

Dr. Sci. (Sociol.) Prof., Сhief Researcher, Department of sociology of youth, Institute of Socio-Political Research RAS, Moscow, Russia

ID of the Article:

For citation:

Zubok Yu.A., Chuprov V.I. Threats in a transforming living environment as a factor of social risks: forecasting and regulation. Sotsiologicheskie issledovaniya [Sociological Studies]. 2017. No 5. P. 57-67


Objective prerequisites of risk in contemporary society are the transformation of the human living environment, changing the conditions of every-day life and the nature of social interactions in society. Viewed in the broad sense as the conditions of human existence, the living environment is divided into natural and artificial sub-spheres. The former is a range of all natural and social conditions of a particular place man lives in, while the latter ones are a man-made material world, making up socio-cultural, anthropogenic and informational infrastructures. Uncontrolled consequences of changing these conditions are perceived by human-being as real threats to security, leading to an increased uncertainty and environmental risks. In the course of social interactions of people, numerous risks arising in the environment are reflected in their subjective reality, making it risky. Risky nature of a changing social reality is becoming a potential source of different kind of social risks. In this connection, it is important to analyze how environmental, anthropogenic, informational and socio-cultural threats get converted into social risks, which mean reducing quality of life, increasing social tensions, migration, and social uncertainty. The article theoretically substantiates a link between risk as essential feature of the changing social reality and evaluation of the threats appearing in the different loci of living environment. In order to predict the occurrence of social risks, the extent of their connection with the threats to the environmental, anthropogenic, informational, and socio-cultural security is analyzed. A mechanism of transforming environmental risks into activity-related ones is conceptualized and empirically illustrated.

risk; living environment; changing social reality; natural; anthropogenic; socio-cultural; informational threats


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Content No 5, 2017