363-0311-00L  Psychological Aspects of Risk Management and Technology

SemesterAutumn Semester 2020
LecturersG. Grote, N. Bienefeld-Seall, J. Schmutz, R. Schneider, M. Zumbühl
Periodicityyearly recurring course
Language of instructionEnglish
CommentNumber of participants limited to 65.


363-0311-00 VPsychological Aspects of Risk Management and Technology
The lecture will be live streamed (recorded).
2 hrs
Wed16:00-18:00ON LI NE »
G. Grote, N. Bienefeld-Seall, J. Schmutz, R. Schneider, M. Zumbühl

Catalogue data

AbstractUsing uncertainty management by organizations and individuals as conceptual framework, risk management and risk implications of new technologies are treated. Three components of risk management (risk identification/evaluation, risk mitigation, risk communication) and underlying psychological and organizational processes are discussed, using company case studies to promote in-depth understanding.
Objective- You know how risk and risk management is defined and applied in different industries
- You know the challenges of decision making under risk and uncertainty and its effects on organisations
- Know about and (partially) apply some risk management tools
- Gain some more in-depth knowledge in a selected field within risk management through the semester project (e.g. transport systems, IT, insurance)

This course consists of three main elements:

A) Attendance of lectures that provide the theoretical foundations of “Psychological Aspects of Risk Management and Technology” together with reading assignments for each lecture.

B) Attendance of guest lectures that provide a rich source of practical insights and enable the transfer of theory into practice by discussing real-life cases with experts from various industries.

C) Furthermore, this course enables you to apply what you have learned in the classroom into practice by participating in a group assignment in which you gain insights into various risk industries (e.g., aviation, healthcare, insurance) and topics (e.g., risks in cyber-attacks, mountaineering, autonomous vehicles). These projects help students understand key aspects through in-depth application of the course material on real-life topics. Each group project will be mentored and graded by one of the lecturers (70% of course grade). To round off the course at the end of the year, you will have the opportunity to present your group’s findings to the lecturers and to your peers (30% of course grade).
ContentThe course is organized into fourteen sessions. Sessions comprise a mixture of (guest) lectures, case discussions, and presentations. Through class discussion we will further deepen understanding of the topics and themes of the class. For each session you are required to prepare by reading the assigned literature or case material provided on the Moodle e-learning platform. Topics covered include:

- Elements of risk management:
o Risk identification and evaluation
o Risk mitigation
o Risk communication

- Psychological and organizational concepts relevant in risk management
o Decision-making under uncertainty
o Risk perception
o Resilient organizational processes for managing uncertainty

- Case studies on different elements of risk management (e.g., rule-making, training, managing project risks, automation)

- Group projects related to company case studies
Lecture notesThere is no scirpt, but slides will be made available before the lectures.
LiteratureThere are texts for each of the course topics made available before the lectures.
Prerequisites / NoticeThe course is restricted to 40 participants who will work closely with the lecturers on case studies prepared by the lecturers on topics relevant in their own companies (SWICA, SWISS, University Hospital Zurich).

Performance assessment

Performance assessment information (valid until the course unit is held again)
Performance assessment as a semester course
ECTS credits3 credits
ExaminersG. Grote, N. Bienefeld-Seall, J. Schmutz, R. Schneider, M. Zumbühl
Typegraded semester performance
Language of examinationEnglish
RepetitionRepetition only possible after re-enrolling for the course unit.

Learning materials

Main linkMOODLE
Only public learning materials are listed.


No information on groups available.


Places65 at the most
Waiting listuntil 27.09.2020
End of registration periodRegistration only possible until 23.09.2020

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