Global Risk Landscape 2019

Published on 19 June 2019

Social media and the 24 hour news cycle are putting businesses at risk as "hype" distracts from the more serious threats to businesses. Business risk assessment and management is being impacted by "Black swans"; attention grabbing issues that are not easy to predict.

This is the biggest lesson from the Global Risk Landscape 2019 Report which surveyed 500 C-suite executives and senior risk experts globally, across all major industries. 

However, despite the risks of distraction, the research also shows that most companies are appropriately prioritising risks on their risk registers according to their impact. New business risks, for example, are not always given higher priority than longer-standing risks.

Key findings from the Report include:

  • Reputation and brand damage comes top of the risk agenda for global leaders.
  • Having topped the list in 2018, regulatory risk fell out of the top three risks which global businesses are least prepared for.
  • 76% of respondents believe their organisation's risk register is being influenced by “hype cycles”.
  • Not all sectors are equally affected by hype cycles: more than half (52%) of respondents in the oil and gas industry, for example, believe their organisation is regularly impacted, compared to less than one fifth (17%) of those working in the leisure and hospitality sector.
  • 74% of participants believe that  "grey rhino" events – highly obvious risks – are being neglected by the board in favour of "black swans" – random, unexpected events that deviate from what is normally expected.
  • This year's report reveals a dichotomy; despite the fear of distraction, companies are appropriately prioritising risks on their risk registers according to their impact.

The Report suggests that concerns have narrowed from the general to the more specific. Regulatory risk has dropped out of the top three perceived risks, while damage to reputation and brand value now sits at the top. The risk of computer crime such as hacking or malicious viruses comes second, with economic slowdown and slow recovery ranking third. We have also identified significant changes in the top business risks for which respondents feel least prepared. 

The report explores how organisations can effectively balance mitigating short-term risks based on media hype with long standing risks which may affect their business operations.

As part of the Global Risk Landscape Report 2019, we have prepared three regional risk white papers that explore the differing business risks and attitudes to risk for EMEA, Americas and APAC regions.

Here you may download and access our regional APAC risk white paper.


The risk landscape across regions

Risk Advisory teams across the Americas, Asia-Pacific and EMEA, deliver insight and advice on the local risks affecting their markets.





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