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Are we prepared for the greatest threats to our world?

Global Risks 2015 - Tenth Edition


The risk of international conflict is the biggest threat to the stability of the world over the next 10 years, according to the World Economic Forum’s Global Risks 2015 report. In addition, rising technology risks and environmental concerns undermine social stability globally, creating deep uncertainty in a world little prepared to confront the challenges.

Prepared for the World Economic Forum and based on the risk perceptions of almost 900 leading decision-makers from business, academia, and the public sector, Global Risks 2015 provides a snapshot of the likelihood and impact of 28 interconnected risks over a 10-year horizon. The report analyzes these risks and identifies the potentially cascading effects they create. The flagship initiative of the World Economic Forum, the report has been published since inception in cooperation with Marsh & McLennan Companies.

Watch a replay of the Global Risks 2015 press launch.

Read more from John Drzik – President of Global Risk and Specialties at Marsh, and Chairman of Marsh & McLennan Companies’ Global Risk Center – about the risks associated with radical emerging technologies on the World Economic Forum website blog, and about the report’s key messages on BRINK.

The Risk Landscape

The report’s risk landscape aggregates World Economic Forum survey responses from 900 risk experts representing business, government, non-governmental organizations, research institutions, and the academic community. The vertical axis organizes risks according to their potential impact; the horizontal axis by their likelihood. Interstate conflict and water crises, for example, feature among the most likely and impactful risks.

Interconnected Risks

Interconnections among global risks have the potential to amplify consequences in unpredictable ways. This chart shows these interconnections and their strength. The strongest link, as identified by survey respondents, is between unemployment or underemployment and profound social instability.