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Companies Failing to Learn Risk Lessons

Global Glimpses | October 4, 2010

As the financial crisis abates, companies are likely to return to the limited “compliance-based” approach to risk management that got so many of them into trouble, according to a new study by accountants Grant Thornton.

The firm surveyed senior executives at 465 U.K. and Irish companies and found “disappointing” attitudes to risk management. Risk processes had a “genuine influence” on decision making at just half the companies in the study. And they added value at just a third.

Executives were paying greater attention to risk because of the downturn, but the study suggests that focus won’t last once things improve.

"The evidence is that the current heightened risk-management activity is part of the traditional cycle associated with economic downturns rather than a fundamental rethink,” said Simon Lowe, the firm’s head of business risk services. “I am...

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