World Economic Forum publishes annual Global Risks Report

Published: Friday, 17 January 2020 10:22

Severe environmental threats account for the top long term risks identified in the World Economic Forum’s Global Risks Report 2020, while risks associated with economic and political polarization are expected to top the risk league table in 2020.

For the first time in the survey’s 10-year outlook, the top five global risks in terms of likelihood are all environmental and include:

For 2020, the report forecasts a year of increased domestic and international divisions and economic slowdown. Geopolitical turbulence is propelling us towards an ‘unsettled’ unilateral world of great power rivalries at a time when business and government leaders must focus urgently on working together to tackle shared risks.

The report says that collaboration between world leaders, businesses and policy-makers is needed more than ever to stop severe threats to our climate, environment, public health and technology systems. This points to a clear need for a multistakeholder approach to mitigating risk at a time when the world cannot wait for the fog of geopolitical disorder to lift.

The percentage of respondents who think a risk will increase in 2020:

The Global Risks Report 2020 was ┬ádeveloped with the support of the World Economic Forum’s Global Risks Advisory Board and from collaboration with its strategic partners Marsh & McLennan and Zurich Insurance Group and its academic advisers at the Oxford Martin School (University of Oxford), the National University of Singapore and the Wharton Risk Management and Decision Processes Center (University of Pennsylvania).

Over 750 global experts and decision-makers were asked to rank their biggest concerns in terms of likelihood and impact.

Read the report (PDF).