beck-cover copyBeck, Ulrich (2014). Ulrich Beck: Pioneer in Cosmopolitan Sociology and Risk Society. Heidelberg: Springer.

This book presents Ulrich Beck, one of the world’s leading sociologists and social thinkers, as a Pioneer in Cosmopolitan Sociology and Risk Society. His world risk society theory has been confirmed by recent disasters – events that have shaken modern society to the core, signalling the end of an era in which comprehensive insurance could keep us safe. Due to its own successes, modern society now faces failure: while in the past experiments were conducted in a lab, now the whole world is a test bed. Whether nuclear plants, genetically modified organisms, nanotechnology – if any of these experiments went wrong, the consequences would have a global impact and would be irreversible. Beck recommends ignoring the mathematical morality of expert opinions, which seek to identify the level of a given risk by calculating the probability of its occurrence. Instead, man’s fear of collapse should offer an opportunity for international cooperation and a cosmopolitan turn in the social sciences.

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Research Field

Methodological Cosmopolitanism

In the Laboratory of Climate Change

Ludwig-Maximillians-Universität München Institute für Soziologie European Research Council