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Emotional-affective aspects of risk work are integral to risk management in many fields, particularly in human service organizations; yet rational notions of risk management often obscure these emotional-affective aspects. In this chapter, we discuss the case of high risk mental healthcare (for people with personality disorders), characterised by both formal and informal risk management systems. Drawing on sociomaterial perspectives, we explore empirically how affective dimensions of routine clinical risk work flow between these formal and informal risk management systems, affecting intersubjective relations and experiences. We show how affect can ‘inflame’ incidents, producing heated interactions that escalate and ‘overflow’ through the risk management technologies, devices and systems intended to contain and manage them. The chapter draws conclusions on dynamics of affective flows and overflows that are present – if less visible – in other areas of risk work.

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Open Access Book Chapter

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Open Access