Risk taking is now a necessity.
The economic slump, an austerity regime and an unprecedented political crisis have led a large part of the Greek population to focus their concerns on unemployment, a ‘primary’ risk that has become a reality for many people. The feeling of exposure to all the potential dangers is very strong but the other risks are now often seen as secondary. They generate anxiety levels that are far below the European average.
For many, unemployment is no longer just a threat, it is a reality. In these conditions and given that the ‘protection’ mechanisms have broken down, many Greeks probably feel that the time has come to kick the traces in terms of taking risks.
Overall, in the EU countries covered by the survey, the prevailing view, by a small majority (51%), is that risk is ‘a danger to be avoided’. strong>In Greece, however, a large majority take a totally opposite view, seeing risk as a ‘stimulant’ (77% versus the overall average of 49%).
Also, when asked which words they associate with ‘risk’, Greeks, together with the British, are the people who least frequently include ‘danger’ in their answers (64%). Very few answer ‘irresponsibility’ or ‘fear’.
The words they associate with ‘risk’ are more frequently ‘luck’ (68% versus 37% overall) and ‘ambition’ (51% versus the overall average of 30%) but very few give ‘confidence’ as an answer (only 6%). In Greece, more than in any other country, the approach to risk taking would appear to have more to do with trying one’s luck than with remaining in control. For part of the population, risk is above all seen as taking a chance in order to achieve one’s ambitions.
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