Pesticide Risk Perceptions, Knowledge, and Attitudes of Operators, Workers, and Residents: A Review of the Literature

Kyriaki Remoundou, Mary Brennan, Andy Hart, Lynn J. Frewer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Citations (SciVal)


The literature on the risk perceptions, knowledge levels, and attitudes of operators, workers, and residents in relation to non-dietary exposure to agricultural pesticides is reviewed. No literature was identified in relation to bystander exposure. Research has primarily been conducted on participants in developing countries and migrant workers in the United States. For operators and workers, illiteracy, poverty, and a perception that exposure to pesticides is an inevitable part of their work results in limited adoption of safety precautions while using and storing pesticides. As a result, risk communication activities aimed at operator and workers need to take account of the wider socioeconomic and cultural conditions in which workers and operators are working and living. There is less research focused on residents’ and bystanders’ perceptions, attitudes, and behaviors. The lack of European data in general, and residents’ and bystanders’ data in particular, represents a knowledge gap that is pertinent to emerging EU legislation requiring residents’ and bystanders’ inclusion in pesticide risk assessment. This review provides a comprehensive overview that can assist policy-makers, and risk communicators in the development of targeted training and awareness-raising material for operators, workers, bystanders, and residents. Areas for future research are suggested.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1113-1138
Number of pages26
JournalHuman and Ecological Risk Assessment: An International Journal
Issue number4
Early online date06 Feb 2014
Publication statusPublished - 04 Jul 2014


  • Agricultural pesticides
  • Risk perceptions
  • Operators
  • Workers
  • Residents


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