Does moving from war zone change emotions and risk perceptions? A field study of Israeli students

Shosh Shahrabani, Uri Benzion, Mosi Rosenboim, Tal Shavit

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations

Abstract

The current field study uses data collected after the 2009 war between Israel and the Hamas militias in the Gaza Strip ended. The study compares recalled emotions and perceived risks among two groups of students, all of whom were exposed to rocket attacks. Individuals in the "left the war zone" group left the region under attack as a precautionary action, while the "stayed in the war zone" group remained in the region during war. The results indicate no significant differences in the levels of recalled fear and anger between the two groups, while the perceived self-risk from terror was higher among the "stayed in the war zone group. Yet, a higher level of recalled fear was found among those who left the war zone and whose parents resided in the war zone, compared to those who left the war zone and whose parents resided outside the war zone. In addition, fearful people became more pessimistic about their level of personal risk from terror, but not about the routine risks. We conclude that civilians need attention even if they leave the war zone since leaving the attacked region as a precautionary action may mitigate perceived self-risk from terror but does not seem to eliminate the high level of negative emotions evoked by the terror attacks.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)669-678
Number of pages10
JournalJudgment and Decision Making
Volume7
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2012

Keywords

  • Emotions
  • Optimism
  • Risk perceptions
  • Terrorism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Decision Sciences (all)
  • Applied Psychology
  • Economics and Econometrics

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