PUBLICATIONS

2011

 

Irk, F. (2011) Road Security as Part of a Global Word. Belügyi Szemle 2011. 10. 5-15. 

Summary

Globalization poses new challenges for all those involved in road traffic. This time we are focusing – mainly – on some little-examined factors of fatal accidents – mostly through case studies. These factors include choosing the speed and the different aspects of the inspection under the rule of law – in connection with the differences between the practice of creating roundabouts and ‘sleeping policemen’ in Hungary and most of the countries of the European Union and also in connection with recent regulations of the traffic of heavy trucks.

 

Irk, F. (2011) Opportunities and Boundaries for Criminal Law in a Risk Society. (Changes in the regulatory role of criminal law in a postmodern age.) Pro Futuro 2011/1. 99-112. 

Summary

In the last few decades of the 20th century, the modernization of our world started to accelerate. This tendency means a transition to a second modernization. Risk society has posed new and previously unknown challenges for the decision makers of the world. As a result of it, criminal law, with its traditional instruments, often fails to provide the right response to the new types of criminal acts seriously threatening society. Therefore, there is a need for a change of paradigm. The task to be performed among the prevailing circumstances of risk society is to select those acts the frequency of which can still be effectively influenced by criminal law through the analysis of advantages/disadvantages and cost/benefit. Instruments different to those of criminal law are to be used against serious threats that cannot be influenced by criminal law – threats the seriousness of which are not yet known to a large extent.

 

Irk, F. (2011) Dilemmas of Risk Management and Risk Analysis. (New type of risks specific from the second half of the 20th century and the contradictions of the answers to them.)  Rendvédelmi Füzetek 2011. 4. 4-31.

Summary

 

In his study the author outlines not only the concept of risk but the reader gains a brief insight into the expected and expectable as well as the not expected and not expectable risks accompanying the societal and economic changes.

The summary of this brief outline is the fact that from the beginning the history of the humankind has been intertwined with risks and risk-taking.

The individual, similarly to the groups, communities, authoritative constellations holding different functions and performing different tasks failed to realize that they were in risk-taking during risk management. Or, most often, during their voluntary action involving risk they were convinced of their successful accomplishment.

The outcome of most of the risky activities accomplished in the past could be mostly foreseen (at least from the part of the external bystanders) as risk taking was either repetitive or it was such a risk taking the input elements of which as well as their interactions had been known and definable by the magnitude. Rarely do risks of such degree and quality happen (e.g. enormous earthquakes, volcanic eruptions or meteorite collisions) that are the consequences of natural events completely independent from us forcing or having forced a large number of people in a position to take risks.

It was not recently that the age of risk society began but around the time when the achievements of the Industrial Revolution became widespread, however it started to evolve at the same time with the generalisation of modern technology. The era when sustainable growth - related to both its social and natural aspects - had to be spoken of dates back to the above mentioned time. Since the 80s of the 20th century some people have realized that time has already passed the above mentioned opportunity (namely: the sustainable growth), and the role of the different parts of the world – tend to be divided to three levels of development by some. In addition, the whole earthy social-natural pattern of life has gone out of the control of the whole humanity and not only out of the control of the powers of the first world considering themselves to be the most developed ones. In terms of both quantity and quality, there are more and more socioeconomic and natural phenomena which result in dangerous and at the same time unpredictable consequences. Because of being dangerous and inestimable, these consequences, which have arisen to a previously unknown risk level are largely unknown and thus they will be either unmanageable or their effects can be mitigated to an endurable level with only great efforts.

We must realize that the traditional risk management techniques (including law and criminal law respectively - the one that is of great importance from the point of view of this study) are further on only partially operational for keeping the effects of well-known micro level risk factors in check. However according to our present knowledge they are totally unsuitable for being the part of efforts aiming at eliminating the harmful consequences of the new macro risks.

Drawing up a new safety concept can be the starting point. The basis of which is the realization of the following: the direction of armed attacks used to be definable however after the cold war the appearance of the enemy can be expected from each direction. Therefore the spectrum of threat and risk has been expanded compared to the earlier period. The Swedish Parliament while drawing up its safety concept – besides the possibility of a military attack – declared national crisis and conflicts from other countries as national risks resulting in the vulnerability of post-industrial societies. Besides national crisis and conflicts from other countries, crisis in the service industry, the economic disequilibrium, mass migration, nationalism, ethnic and cultural conflicts and terrorism are regarded as national risks of that kind, too. While the aforementioned risks are placed to be among the low ones according to one classification, another report considered the fact that societies and economies were torn apart, the conflicts among nations, pollution, the shortage of material assets and the vulnerability of the totality of modern societies as processes of the 1990s that posed the highest risks. It may be concluded from the preceding facts that not only military and civilian protection should be brought together on a common platform but protection should be extended to the whole population. It is regarded to be the holistic approach of the problem. Thus the costs of protection against vulnerability can be reduced significantly.

From this point of view it is relevant to take into account what sort of risks people tend to show inspiration for, or rather, which are the risks they tend to accept with aversion. Considering large amount of samples as well, researchers found that attitude towards risks of different kinds shows significant differences.

By the beginning of the 21st century the potential attack surfaces constituting the greatest degree of hazard to the operation of the state in all European countries (even outside Europe as well) had been formed. They are as follows:

·         terrorism;

·         the strong influence of refugees and their helpers;

·         the proliferation of weapons suitable in number for mass destruction;

·         international organized crime;

·         environmental damage;

·         destroying critical infrastructures e.g. electricity grid, radio and television, telecommunications, computer network and water;

·         the use of biological and chemical weapons.

 Another important remark: A certain form of risk culture is present everywhere in the so called ’Western’ societies of today. It exists in the literature as well as in the world of work, in the relationships among people, in food consumption, leisure activities and in the protection of safety and personal health. However the world has changed and the new global challenges are expecting new responses to be given.

 


 

 

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Contact
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Prof. Dr. Ferenc Irk
Email: info@irkferenc.hu