Haldane Room, Wolfson College
Wednesday, 12 October 2011 - 5:30pm


Risk Versus Hazard: Hypocrisy in Policy

This panel discussion addressed the following questions:

  • How can we ensure that the regulations coming out of the UK and European Union are based on scientific risk assessments? 
  • How do we prevent confusion between what is meant by "€˜risk"€™ versus "hazard"™?
  • How do the courts define risk?
  • Have risk and hazard been conflated by the courts? 
  • Should the courts even be involved in the science of risk?

Participants assessed the lack of consistency across the EU in risk versus hazard categorisation of products, and the resultant discrepancies in policy across member states and between regulatory agencies.

Bringing together key actors across science, regulation, policy, and law, the discussion aims to shed light on the risk versus hazard debate, uncovering solutions to aid regulators, policymakers, and lawyers to develop more consistent, science-based regulations for Europe.


Professor Denis Galligan, Professor of Socio-Legal Studies, University of Oxford

Professor Ragnar Lofstedt, Director of the Kings Centre for Risk Management, Kings College London

Dave Bench, Director of Policy, Health and Safety Executive

Mark Tyler, Partner/Solicitor, Shook, Hardy and Bacon

Lynda Armstrong OBE, Chair, British Safety Council