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Business & Economics Risk Assessment & Management

The Doom Loop in the Financial Sector

And Other Black Holes of Risk

by (author) William Leiss

Publisher
University of Ottawa Press
Initial publish date
Feb 2011
Category
Risk Assessment & Management, Disasters & Disaster Relief
  • eBook

    ISBN
    9780776619279
    Publish Date
    Feb 2011
    List Price
    $11.99
  • Paperback / softback

    ISBN
    9780776607382
    Publish Date
    Oct 2010
    List Price
    $24.95

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Description

 

In the past two years, the world has experienced how unsound economic practices can disrupt global economic and social order. Today’s volatile global financial situation highlights the importance of managing risk and the consequences of poor decision making.

The Doom Loop in the Financial Sector reveals an underlying paradox of risk management: the better we become at assessing risks, the more we feel comfortable taking them. Using the current financial crisis as a case study, renowned risk expert William Leiss engages with the new concept of “black hole risk” — risk so great that estimating the potential downsides is impossible. His risk-centred analysis of the lead-up to the crisis reveals the practices that brought it about and how it became common practice to use limited risk assessments as a justification to gamble huge sums of money on unsound economic policies.

In order to limit future catastrophes, Leiss recommends international cooperation to manage black hole risks. He believes that, failing this, humanity could be susceptible to a dangerous nexus of global disasters that would threaten human civilization as we know it.

 

About the author

William Leiss is a fellow and past president of the Royal Society of Canada, an officer of the Order of Canada, and professor emeritus at the School of Policy Studies, Queen’s University. He is the author of several books, including Mad Cows and Mother’s Milk: The Perils of Poor Risk Communication.

William Leiss' profile page

Other titles by William Leiss