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Jonathan Wolff and Avner de-Shalit

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199278268

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199278268.001.0001

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(p.63) Chapter 3 Risk

Jonathan Wolff (Contributor Webpage)

Avner De-Shalit

Oxford University Press

This chapter argues the importance of examining not only what functionings a person achieves, but also his or her prospect of securing and sustaining a level of functioning should he or she attempt to do so. Key determinants of their prospects are: their probability of success, and what they have to sacrifice to achieve that probability of success. Thus, a key aspect of disadvantage is for one's functionings being or becoming insecure involuntarily, or when in order to secure certain functionings, one is forced to make other functionings insecure in a way that other people do not have to do. Accordingly, a policy of rectifying disadvantage would need to pay special attention to the question of how to secure functionings and how to avoid cross-category risk, i.e., when a risk spreads to other functionings. It is suggested that if a snapshot of a person's functioning is to be represented as a bar chart, the heights and widths of each bar should represent the functioning level achieved and the functioning's security, respectively.

Keywords:   achieved functioning, cross-category risk, disadvantage, secure functioning

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