The 2015 edition of the Global Risks report completes a decade of highlighting the most significant long-term risks worldwide, drawing on the perspectives of experts and global decision-makers.
A global risk is an uncertain event or condition that, if it occurs, can cause a significant negative impact for several countries or industries within the next 10 years.
A trend is defined as a long-term pattern that is currently taking place and that could amplify global risks and/or alter the relationship between them.
The Global Risks Landscape, a map of the most likely and impactful global risks, puts forward that, 25 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, “interstate conflict” is once again a foremost concern.
2015 The Global Risks Landscape differs markedly from the past, with rising technological risks, notably cyber attacks, and new economic realities, which remind us that geopolitical tensions present themselves in a very different world from before. Information flows instantly around the globe and emerging technologies have boosted the influence of new players and new types of warfare. At the same time, past warnings of potential environmental catastrophes have begun to be borne out, yet insufficient progress has been made – as reflected in the high concerns about the failure of climate-change adaptation and looming water crises in this year’s report.
These multiple cross-cutting challenges can threaten social stability, perceived to be the issue most interconnected with other risks in 2015, and additionally aggravated by the legacy of the global economic crisis in the form of strained public finances and persistent unemployment. The central theme of profound social instability highlights an important paradox that has been smoldering since the crisis but surfaces prominently in this year’s report. Global risks transcend borders and spheres of influence and require stakeholders to work together, yet these risks also threaten to undermine the trust and collaboration needed to adapt to the challenges of the new global context.
The world is, however, insufficiently prepared for an increasingly complex risk environment. For the first time, the report provides insights on this at the regional level: social instability features among the three global risks that Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean, and the Middle East and North Africa are least prepared for.
Other societal risks, ranging from the failure of urban planning in South Asia to water crises in the Middle East and North Africa, are also prominent. And the capacity to tackle persistent unemployment – an important risk connected with social instability – is a major concern in Europe and sub-Saharan Africa.
To access the full report and whole details, please follow World Economic Forum Global Risks of 2015 link.