Downside Risks and Human Security

  • Yoichi Mine


The present chapter tries to examine a series of problems concomitant with policy formation and theorization of human security, giving special emphasis to ‘downside risks’ encountered by various levels of communities within and beyond the boundaries of nations. The term ‘downside’ relates to the vicissitude, or turbulent ups and downs, intrinsic to the evolution of human economies and societies, and the term ‘risks’ implies those hazards which occur due to positive action or nonaction of human agency. According to the definition of Niklas Luhmann, Risiko (risk) is associated with future loss as a consequence of human decision, while Gefahr (danger, hazard, peril or threat) is posed externally from the environment (Luhmann 1993: 21–2). Although the dividing lines between risk and danger are always nebulous and these two terms can be used interchangeably in many cases, the former seem to be increasingly permeating the latter in our modern age.


Human Development State Security Downside Risk Idiosyncratic Risk Human Security 
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© Yoichi Mine 2007

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  • Yoichi Mine

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