Category Archive: risk

Mar
11
2014

A prize!!

This is a graphic record of the event. Jeremy Harrison, the head of the Institute of Risk Management, is laughing because I have just called him a sneaky bastard for inviting me to dinner without warning me that he had this in mind. And I am looking bemused because I was – and still am. …

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Nov
03
2013

Been there. Got the T-shirt.

risktshirt

Yesterday was Risk Day in Birmingham’s Town Hall with numerous events and speakers focused on the theme. My contribution was rewarded with a conference T-shirt.   I suggested that since The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents has its headquarters in Birmingham they might like to come over to take part in a discussion …

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Oct
17
2013

Slides from my lecture on the public perception of risk

Powerpoint presentation delivered at Imperial College on October 14th 2013.

Jun
11
2013

Pater knows best?

Screen Shot 2013-06-10 at 12.07.34

Risk compensation – the proposition that a person’s perception of risk influences their risk-taking behaviour – has now become conventional wisdom.  No one now disputes that rock climbers with ropes will attempt manoeuvres that they would not attempt without them, or that trapeze artists will attempt manoeuvres with nets that they would not attempt without. …

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Apr
03
2013

Now wash your hands

brick wall

I recently visited an exhibition at the Barbican Centre in London entitled “The Bride and the Bachelors: Duchamp with Cage, Cunningham, Rauschenberg and Johns” More recently I was invited to speak to a conference entitled “Risk culture for charities” organised by the Institute for Risk Management. I began my conference presentation with an overview of …

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Aug
01
2012

Is ISO 31000 fit for purpose?

The debate “Is ISO 31000 fit for purpose” is the headline above a debate published in the June edition of Risk Management Professional – for online version click here. The “debate” consisted of an abbreviated version of my blog – “ISO 31 000: Dr Rorschach meets Humpty Dumpty” -­‐ and a “rebuttal” by Grant Purdy, …

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May
07
2012

ISO 31000: the debate warms up

Until recently most online discussion of ISO 31000 has been confined to a friendly Linkedin site for supporters: two quotations – “I know the ISO 31000 and think it’s almost perfect” and “I think the ISO 31000 definition of risk is great” – will convey the flavor of the critical discussion to be found on …

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Apr
13
2012

Post hoc, trees are dangerous

Last night (11/4/2012) I took part in an interesting Radio 3 discussion programme called Night Waves . The first contributor, Jonathan Haidt, was fascinating and I’ve just ordered his new book The Righteous Mind. In the discussion he made a point that resonated with a problem that I have been wrestling with: discussing the relationship …

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Feb
22
2012

ISO 31000: Dr Rorschach meets Humpty Dumpty

Much advice is proffered in cyberspace about how to manage risk: at the time of writing, tapping “risk management” into Google yielded 72 million hits. Do you sometimes (frequently?) on reading risk management guidance get to the end without a clue as to what the guide expects you, the risk manager, to actually do? I …

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Jan
13
2012

What is risk?

A new book from Cambridge University Press – Successful Science communication, (Bennett and Jennings eds.) – contains 26 chapters with helpful things to say to people concerned to communicate complex ideas to “the public”. Plus a chapter by me entitled Not 100% sure? The “public” understanding of risk; the reader is left to judge whether …

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