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Synthesis 2012 > United Kingdom

United Kingdom 2012

In the United Kingdom the level of anxiety is lower than the European average, partly because fewer British respondents feel that the efficiency of their economic and social protection mechanisms has declined over the past five years.
Although the level of protection (through insurance or state schemes) is lower than in Germany, an above average number of British respondents feel they have the financial capacity to cope with the risks.
The British have a measured approach to risk taking.

British people are less worried about life risks than the average in Europe and more frequently consider they have the financial capacity to cope with these risks

  • They see 2/11 risks as likely compared with the European average of 4/11
  • Only 32% consider themselves likely to face unemployment (versus 51% overall)
  • Only 22% consider themselves likely to face financial risk (versus 38% overall)
  • A majority consider the protection system to be just as efficient as before
  • Only 29% feel less protected against social and economic risks than they were five years ago (compared with 47% overall).

A majority consider the protection system to be just as efficient as before British people are less worried about life risks than the average in Europe:

  • 8/17 risks are considered worrying (compared with the overall average of 11/17)
  • 42% say they are worried by the risk of losing their job (versus 57% overall)
  • 33% say they are worried by the risk of their spouse/partner losing their job (versus 55% overall).
  • 61% say they are worried by the risk of loss of autonomy (versus 68% overall)
  • 54% say they are worried about the risk of invalidity (versus 65% overall)

However, although the British value risk taking, their attitude is more measured than in Greece or Poland.
The British attitude to risk is moderate. Risk taking is not rejected

  • 57% of British respondents feel that children should be taught that they must be prepared to take risks and pay the price if they fail (versus 56% in Poland)
  • 48% of British respondents view risk as a stimulant, which is more than in France (38%), Spain (34%) and Italy (42%).
  • 61% of British respondents think of ‘a chance’ when risk is evoked (versus 37% overall)
  • 22% think of ‘confidence’ when risk is evoked (versus 12% overall).

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