Simulating the Formation of Risk Perception
The damages of smoking on health have been taken more and more seriously, most relative studies focus on fields in sociology, psychology, public health or economy. The act of smoking itself satisfies the smoker's need for consumption, but at the same time produces negative effect such as smoking related damages. When making a decision whether to smoke or not or how much to smoke, the decision itself is hugely swayed by the smoker's own perception of risk regarding this matter. Whenever there is uncertainty involved, the decision made regarding whether to carry out the act i.e. smoking or not hugely depends upon the amount of risk perceived by each individual. Sex, age, education, health awareness and other factors affect how a perception is formed, in other words, how a "belief" is formed, and the forming process itself is a complex and intricate learning/evolving process. In this study, an agent-based computational model is employed to look at how a risk perception is formed and how the decision to smoke is made. This system can be used to observe the dynamic between anti-smoking policy and decision makers, and the resulting observation can serve as useful reference when the government is making or executing relative policies.
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