The paper presents two studies which investigate social representation of risk among young adults. The first one is a qualitative study, involving 20 young people (mean age = 22; SD = 2.57) and it was based on 3 focus group. Participants had to: i) realize a collage about risk concept; ii) classify different risk typologies. The second study, which involved 200 young adults (mean age = 21.65, SD = 2.59), used free association to the stated word "risk". Associations were analyzed using the EVOC program. On the whole, the two studies show that the social representation of risk has both a nega- tive dimension, relating to the danger idea, and a positive dimension, relating to the personal development and the fun. Moreover data show some critical aspects regarding the risk control, which lead people to feel frustration, denial and fatalism. Finally, risk representation seems different depending on participants sex.
Keywords: Risk, social representation, young adults, free association