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WEF Risks Report: Economic and Environmental Damage Soon, Resource Crises and Tech Threats Later

January 21, 2021 Leave a comment DRI Admin

The latest edition of the World Economic Forum’s annual Global Risks Report is urging the world to take the current pandemic as a wake-up call to pay attention to long-term risks we may be ignoring.

The 16th edition of the WEF report rates risks according to when respondents perceive they will pose a critical threat to the world:

  • Clear and present dangers (0-2 years) – Infectious diseases, employment crises, digital inequality and youth disillusionment
  • Medium-term risks (3-5 years) – Knock-on economic and technological risks such as asset bubble bursts, IT infrastructure breakdown, price instability and debt crises
  • Existential threats (5-10 years) – Weapons of mass destruction, state collapse, biodiversity loss and adverse technological advancement

Among the highlighted risks, failure to respond to climate change is dubbed as potentially catastrophic, as well as the most impactful and second most likely long-term risk identified. And with weakened geopolitical cooperation to facilitate a global recovery, the crisis can only worsen.

The report also looks at the recent efforts of countries to the global pandemic and offers four opportunities for governments and organizations to strengthen overall resilience:

  1. Formulating analytical frameworks that take a holistic and systems-based view of risk impacts
  2. Investing in high-profile “risk champions” to encourage national leadership and international cooperation
  3. Improving risk communications and combating misinformation, and
  4. Exploring new forms of public-private partnership on risk preparedness.

Click here to download the complete report.