2021 Volume 30 Issue 2 Pages 89-95
On April 15, 2020, one member of the Cluster Intervention Group, the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, Japan, released his risk assessment, which stated that 420,000 people in Japan would die from COVID-19 if no countermeasure is taken. His prediction was criticized for causing excessive anxiety in people and atrophying the national economy. This article discusses whether such a form of risk assessment inflames public emotions. The problem was examined based on the three models in decision-making and risk perception research: the value function of prospect theory, the two-factor model of risk perception, and the dual-process theories. From these perspectives, it was tentatively concluded that no matter how large the number of deaths that are forecasted is, it is difficult for statistical risk assessments to cause excessive fear in people.