Risk Assessment: An Overview
Violence is action, while dangerousness is a potential and a matter of opinion. The term risk is now used in professional practice in preference to dangerousness. Risk is, ideally, a matter of statistical fact. It emphasizes a continuum of levels of risk, varying not only with the individual but also with the context. Risk may change over time and, in principle, should be based on objective assessment. Dangerousness tends to imply an all-or-none phenomenon and a static characteristic of an individual. However, risk assessment is less important than risk management, though risk management does not imply risk elimination (as shown by the Global Financial Meltdown of 2008, which brought the question of the validity and reliability of scientific risk management into focus).