Zika – Can We Predict the Next Outbreak? (Pt 2)

Risk Institute Portraits Fisher Hall - Third Floor Feb-02-2016 Photo by Jay LaPrete ©2016 Jay LaPrete

By  Philip S. Renaud II, MS, CPCU
Executive Director, The Risk Institute
The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business

 


With regard to the Zika virus, The World Health Organization (WHO) and other health organizations have called for top level meetings to address the virus and its worldwide impact. The WHO has recently warned that the virus could potentially spread to every country in the Americas.

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We need not think beyond the last few years where we saw SARS (2003), Influenza H1N1 (2009) or Chikungunya (2014) to understand that there is a great need for businesses to think about proper planning and dealing with the potential impact upon business and society. Central to risk mitigation is learning as much as possible about Zika and its potential impact to your organization.

On June 13, 2016, The Risk Institute at The Ohio State University Fisher School of Business brought together a group of professionals representing a diverse assortment of job responsibilities and

industries to discuss the impending Zika virus and pandemic planning from an enterprise perspective. The discussion centered on four topics:

  • Evolutionary Ecology and Viruses
  • Pathogens and Pandemics: Emerging Viruses including Zika
  • Pandemic Planning
  • Learning from Pandemic Events: From SARS to Zika

Conversation was energetic as we explored the factors that are driving emerging infectious disease including host shifting, the emergence of drug resistant pathogens, and insect/tick pathogens combined with rapid population growth.  This, coupled with greater urbanization, increased global travel and global climate change, creates an environment where we will most likely see an increase in emerging infectious diseases.

With this information present and the summer months now upon us, companies need to focus on mitigating the risk of Zika within the workplace. Does your company have employees in infected regions? Do you have employees that travel to infected regions? Do you have the correct information to inform employees about how to limit the spread and contraction of the disease? Employers also will need to be flexible and prepare to possibly to delay trips to infected areas, hold virtual meetings, etc.

Global Air Travel Kilpatrick and Randolph

To the extent that your organization has developed a business continuity plan, risk managers must ask if the plan is sufficient to deal with a pandemic threat in addition to the more traditional exposures present. Once you are comfortable that the plan is robust enough, it will need to be tested to respond to geographic specific exposure that could have wider impact upon the business and it customers.

Nancy Green from Aon pointed out that organizations should also conduct a review of their insurance portfolio. For example, within the firm’s property coverage, does the coverage extend to the cost of sanitizing and testing? What about the cost of evacuation of an insured property? How about the resulting loss of income from the closure of a hotel (if your business includes that exposure) during sanitization, or loss of guests due to identification of the virus at the insured premises.  What about contingent business interruption or extra expense due to the closure of a key facility of a key customer or supplier.  Green also stressed the importance of making considerations for Worker’s Compensation and Liability claims, as well as reviewing your company’s health insurance coverage. All valid and very important checks and balances to consider as we think through the enterprise-wide impact on an organization.

Our session also focused on valuable lessons  learned from past events and how they can be used to provide valuable insight for the present and future. As put forth by Tom Hopkins of Sherwin-Williams, key to his organization dealing with previous pandemics were:

  • Identification of all relevant stakeholders
  • Develop both plans and processes to address issues
  • Identify resources needed locally and globally
  • Think global, act local
  • Have communication platform in place, and stress test it in non-critical situations
  • Have senior management alignment in place to enact a “Analysis & Action Now, Evaluation Later” methodology
  • Get comfortable with ambiguity

The Risk Institute is thankful for the informed leadership of our session experts, Professor Steve Rissing (Department of Evolution, Ecology and Organismal Biology, The Ohio State University), Julie E. Mangino MD, FSHEA (Professor of Internal Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases, The Ohio State University and Medical Director, Department of Clinical Epidemiology, OSU Wexner Medical Center), Nancy Green CPCU, ARM (Executive Vice President, Aon Risk Solutions) and Thomas E. Hopkins, (Retired SVP Human Resources, The Sherwin–Williams Company).

The session provided thought provoking ideas and advanced The Risk Institute’s unique role in uniting industry thought leaders, academics and highly respected practitioners in an ongoing dialog to advance the understanding and evolution of risk management. The Risk Institute’s conversation about risk management is open and collaborative with its relevance across all industries and its potential for competitiveness and growth.


On June 13, 2016, The Risk Institute at The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business presented the first session of its 2016-2017 Executive Education Risk Series, Zika – Can We Predict the Next Pandemic Outbreak? For more information on this and future events, please visit http://go.osu.edu/Zika-u-osu.

 

Bridging the Gap Between Research and Practice

Risk Institute Portraits Fisher Hall - Third Floor Feb-02-2016 Photo by Jay LaPrete ©2016 Jay LaPreteIsil Erel
Academic Director, The Risk Institute
Professor of Finance
The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business

 


One of the primary functions of The Risk Institute at The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business is to serve as a conduit between academic research and practitioners of risk management.  New research insights, the advancement of theory, and top-tier empirical studies are at the foundation of our mission, but we also want to see the utilization and implementation of our research findings.

We often reference that The Risk Institute exists at the intersection of academia and practice of risk management. It is at this intersection where we facilitate the translation of academic research into practical application. The challenge most busy industry practitioners face is that high level research is written in the unique language of academia and their busy schedules don’t afford them the discretionary time to tackle a lengthy thesis of academic research on the off chance it might contain a relevant insight or two.

risk3TwitterThe Risk Institute is meeting the need by bridging the gap with The Risk Institute Research Translation Series – a curated collection of insightful one-page practitioner focused translations of relevant research topics. Written from the perspective of a practitioner for a practitioner this one page overview goes beyond an executive summary and focuses on the substantive insight of the research in a concise and efficient manner. A practitioner can supplement their knowledge of the latest research in a matter of minutes. Should a topic resonate, the opportunity exists for more in depth reading as well as engaging the researchers through The Risk Institute.

New translations will be coming online and I encourage you to frequently consult our digital library for new offerings. Of particular note will be the translations from each of our academic grants for research from last year, which will be available later this summer.

Risk is an ever-evolving field and we are confident that The Risk Institute can play a vital role with these translations in advancing the knowledge base and practice of enterprise risk management.


The Risk Institute at The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business brings together practitioners and researchers to engage in risk – centered conversations and to exchange ideas and strategies on integrated risk management. Through the collaboration of faculty, students and risk management professionals, The Risk Institute addresses risk at a broad cross section of industries and is dedicated to developing leading – edge approaches to risk management.

 

The Risk Institute at The Ohio State University Releases its Second Annual Survey on Integrated Risk Management

Risk Institute Portraits Fisher Hall - Third Floor Feb-02-2016 Photo by Jay LaPrete ©2016 Jay LaPreteIsil Erel
Academic Director, The Risk Institute
Professor of Finance
The Ohio State University Fisher College of BusinessRisk Institute Portraits Fisher Hall - Third Floor Feb-02-2016 Photo by Jay LaPrete ©2016 Jay LaPrete

 

Philip S. Renaud II, MS, CPCU
Executive Director, The Risk Institute
The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business


On June 1, 2016, The Risk Institute at The Ohio State University Fisher School of Business unveiled findings from its second Annual Survey on Integrated Risk Management. The research initiative focuses on how U.S. companies view the role of risk management, how it is structured and the ways it is integrated to support business decisions. Senior leadership from more than 530 financial (23 percent) and non-financial (77 percent) companies both public and private were surveyed for the report.

This year’s survey has demonstrated that risk management continues to evolve and firms are creating holistic and organization wide risk management functions. The survey highlights how integrating risk management plays a key role in a firm’s ability to remain competitive and create sustainable value in the current business and economic climate.  

Respondents of the survey deliver insights across five key areas:

  • Organizational structure and tone at the top
    • Firms are moving toward a more centralized approach to risk management, as it is a source of both growth and value. In fact, half of the firms surveyed shared that senior leadership is allocating more funds for external and internal resources.
  • How risk management is integrated into business processes
    • To effectively integrate risk management into business decisions, firms must recognize business processes. The three leading processes reported by survey participants were:
      • Compliance
      • Strategic Planning
      • Operational Business Planning and Management
  • The scope of risk management
    • The survey highlighted that to limit risk taking by employees in financial and non-financial firms, management extensively takes steps to limit sales at risk (or similarly cash flow at risk). They also require use of financial instruments (e.g. derivatives) as hedges rather than speculative tools, set size limits on projects permissible without limits, and use financial hurdle rates to adjust for risk.
  • Risk management process
    • While many respondents believe risk management is integrated across the firm, they also report that only a subset of business functions are actively involved in identifying, measuring and managing major risks.
  • Disruption
    • Approximately 80 percent of firms participating did not experience a disruptive event in the last year. If they did, most reported that the disruptions were related to regulations, cyber theft of confidential information and or systems failure.

The Risk Institute is excited to continue to participate in the conversation around the evolution of risk management within business, from an integrated perspective of academia and practice. Stay tuned as we dig deeper into the survey results in future posts, and feel free to contact us to continue the conversation or explore ways to engage with us on this mission.


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Zika – Can We Predict the Next Pandemic Outbreak? (Pt 1)

Risk Institute Portraits Fisher Hall - Third Floor Feb-02-2016 Photo by Jay LaPrete ©2016 Jay LaPrete

By  Philip S. Renaud II, MS, CPCU
Executive Director, The Risk Institute
The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business

 


The World Health Organization (WHO) and other health organizations have called for top level meetings to address the Zika virus and its worldwide impact. Researchers first discovered the virus nearly 70 years ago. Very few cases were reported until 2007 when an outbreak on Yap Island in Micronesia infected nearly 70% of the population ages three years and older. The WHO has warned that the virus could potentially spread to every country in the Americas.

Companies need to focus on how they can mitigate the risk of Zika within the workplace. Does your company have employees in infected regions?

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Image courtesy of Pan American Health Organization and WHO. Click for more info.

Do you have employees that travel to infected regions? Central to risk mitigation for any employer is to learn as much as possible about Zika and its potential impact to your organization.  Employers need to be flexible. Consideration should be given to delaying trips to infected areas, holding virtual meetings, etc.

An organization’s business continuity plans will need to be tested to respond to geographic specific exposure that could have wider impact upon the business and it customers.

On June 13th, The Risk Institute will host guest speakers, Julie E. Mangino MD, FSHEA (Division of Infectious Diseases, The Ohio State University, and Department of Epidemiology, OSUWMC), Professor Steve Rissing (Department of Evolution, Ecology and Organismal Biology, The Ohio State University), Nancy Green CPCU, ARM (Executive VP, Aon Risk Solutions) and Thomas E. Hopkins (Sr. VP Human Resources (retired), The Sherwin–Williams Company) will collaborate to provide insight into:

  • How evolutionary biology provides a road map into eruptions of Zika and other similar viruses.
  • The facts about the spread of the Zika virus and how to mitigate the fear factor.
  • The facts about prevention, treatment and links to specific birth defects.
  • How to prepare your business for Zika and other pandemic viruses, including business travel concerns.

This first session of our 2016-2017 Executive Education Risk Series will emphasize how to proactively use risk management to balance the risks related to Zika and wider pandemic planning in order to meet business goals and enhance business performance.

The session will provide thought provoking ideas and advance The Risk Institute’s unique role in uniting industry thought leaders, academics and highly respected practitioners in an ongoing dialog to advance the understanding and evolution of risk management. The Risk Institute’s conversation about risk management is open and collaborative with its relevance across all industries and its potential for competitiveness and growth.

 


On June 13, 2016, The Risk Institute at The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business will present the first session of its 2016-2017 Executive Education Risk Series, Zika – Can We Predict the Next Pandemic Outbreak? For more information, or to register, please visit http://go.osu.edu/Zika-u-osu.

 

Managing Your Talent Pipeline and Succession Planning

Risk Institute Portraits Fisher Hall - Third Floor Feb-02-2016 Photo by Jay LaPrete ©2016 Jay LaPretePhilip S. Renaud II, MS, CPCU
Executive Director, The Risk Institute
The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business

 

 


On May 12, 2016, The Risk Institute at The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business held, as the final session  of its 2015-2016 Executive Education series, The Talent War: Managing the Talent Pipeline and Succession Planning. The session was very well attended with participants from a cross section of industry sectors.

All industry sectors from retail to manufacturing regularly face the challenge of recruiting, selecting, on-boarding developing and maximizing talent. More and more sectors are reporting significant challenges in recruiting and retaining good talent.

Whether caused by rapid advances in technology and skills, changing workplace perceptions of millennials, or pending retirement of the “boomer” generation, businesses are facing a new and complicated set of dynamics

Session leaders, Anthony J. Rucci (The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business), Levi Segal, (Aon Hewitt) and Yvonne Kalucis (MXD Group) collaborated to provide insights into understanding the changing, complex alignment of talent management to general business strategy. The session emphasized how to proactively use risk management to balance the risks related to talent management in order to meet business goals and enhance business performance.

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Professor Rucci’s presentation included very interesting points on:

  • The intangible value chain (predicting performance risk with intangibles)
  • Employee “commitment” as a key risk indicator
  • CEO challenges and strategic talent management
  • Organization capabilities risk measurement and audit

Professor Rucci was followed by Levi Segal, who spoke on Strategic Performance Management: Can You Afford to NOT Get This Right? Segal raised some thought provoking questions that included:

  • Are you competing for top talent with more industries than before?
  • Are we incenting the right behavior?
  • How much economic value do high performers add versus the rest?
  • Are you ready to manage and pay for performance in an age of less pay, decreased flexibility and greater regulation?

Finally, Yvonne Kalucis presented on Strategic Talent from the practitioner perspective. The presentation highlighted unique characteristics of strategic positions within an organization. Defining characteristics of strategic positions typically are:

  • Usually <20% of organization
  • Hold disproportionate importance to a company’s ability to execute its strategy
  • Wide variability in the quality of the work displayed among team members in the position

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The session provided thought provoking ideas and advanced The Risk Institute’s unique role in uniting industry thought leaders, academics and highly respected practitioners in an ongoing dialog to advance the understanding and evolution of risk management. The Risk Institute’s conversation about risk management is open and collaborative with its relevance across all industries and its potential for competitiveness and growth.


For more information about upcoming events, our students, partners or research, visit our website: fisher.osu.edu/centers/risk.

The Talent War: Managing the Talent Pipeline and Succession Planning

Risk Institute Portraits Fisher Hall - Third Floor Feb-02-2016 Photo by Jay LaPrete ©2016 Jay LaPrete

By  Philip S. Renaud II, MS, CPCU
Executive Director, The Risk Institute
The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business

 


On May 12, 2016, The Risk Institute at The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business will be presenting the final session of its 2015-2016 Executive Education series, The Talent War: Managing the Talent Pipeline and Succession Planning.

All industry sectors from retail to manufacturing regularly face the challenge of recruiting, selecting, onboarding developing and maximizing talent. More and more sectors are reporting significant challenges in recruiting and retaining good talent. Whether caused by rapid advances in technology and skills, changing workplace perceptions of millennials, or pending retirement of the “boomer” generation, businesses are facing a new and complicated set of dynamics.

Session leaders, Anthony J. Rucci (The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business) and Yvonne Kalucis (MXD Group) will collaborate to provide insights intoRiskInstitute_block understanding the changing, complex alignment of talent management to general business strategy. The session will emphasize how to proactively use risk management to balance the risks related to talent management in order to meet business goals and enhance business performance.

The session will provide thought provoking ideas and advance The Risk Institute’s unique role in uniting industry thought leaders, academics and highly respected practitioners in an ongoing dialog to advance the understanding and evolution of risk management. The Risk Institute’s conversation about risk management is open and collaborative with its relevance across all industries and its potential for competitiveness and growth.


The Risk Institute Executive Education Series will complete it’s 2015-2016 season on May 12, 2016 with The Talent War – Managing the Talent Pipeline and Succession Planning, a half-day course for executives. For more information, or to sign up for the session, visit FISHER.OSU.EDU/RISK


 

Fisher’s 2016 Business Case Simulation Competition – A Student Perspective

Reardon, Megan 2016

 

By Megan Reardon
Sophomore, Finance Major
The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business

 


With many risk industry professionals retiring in the next 10 years, the Enterprise Risk Management field is experiencing a bottleneck. That being said, it is a great time for students to get involved in the industry. The number of risk management jobs increase every year, with great opportunities for quick movement up company management. However, hiring companies want to see that students are interested in the challenges and diverse job titles of risk managers. I have found that through The Risk Institute at Fisher, as well as the Risk Management Association, I have had opportunities to build my business acumen and meet with industry professionals. Recently, I was the given the opportunity to compete in a business simulation with other students, both graduate and undergraduate.

On April 14, 2016, The Risk Institute and the Risk Management Association co-hosted a “pre-dinner” for the business simulation, where the students had the opportunity to meet with other risk students, as well as Phil Renaud, Executive Director of The Risk Institute, and Denita Strietelmeier, Program Manager at The Risk Institute and RMA’s advisor. Phil and Denita had the opportunity to speak about what the goals of the Risk Institute are and why risk is important to companies. This event gave students the opportunity to meet the students they would be working with in a more casual setting, laying the foundation for a successful business simulation.

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Megan Reardon’s team for the 2016 Fisher Risk Management Business Simulation Competition

The following day, April 15, 2016, The Risk Institute and Risk Management Association co-sponsored Fisher’s first risk-centered business simulation. The all-day event provided an opportunity for the students to experience risk management from a practical perspective. Specifically, the simulation was a business continuity exercise focused on operational and supply chain risk. Students worked as a team to create a comprehensive reaction plan based on incident response, business resumption, recovery and restoration. There were four teams comprised of 3-4 members each, as well as coaches and judges from the Fisher College of Business and DHL. Participating in this event was both an educational experience as well as a great opportunity to network with other students also interested in risk. Though my team didn’t place first, I learned about the importance of corporate crisis management after a disaster. More broadly, the business simulation reiterated that Risk Management is heavily involved in both small business decisions as well as larger corporate strategies.


Megan Reardon will be spending the upcoming summer as a Supply Chain/ Logistics Intern at Rockwell Automation.  She will return to Fisher College of Business for her junior year and will serve as Vice President of the Risk Management Association.

Business Continuity Management: A Business Case Simulation

Risk Institute Portraits Fisher Hall - Third Floor Feb-02-2016 Photo by Jay LaPrete ©2016 Jay LaPrete

By  Philip S. Renaud II, MS, CPCU
Executive Director, The Risk Institute
The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business

 


Each and every day, businesses face the challenge of managing in the face of disruption. That disruption may be a result of a supply chain failure, natural catastrophe, cyber event, the list of disruptions goes on and on. With the volatility that businesses face, the need to structure proper business continuity / critical incident management plans has never been more important.

According to a recent study authored by Allianz Global Corporate and Specialty, 58% of participants reported that Business Interruption (including supply chain disruption) was a key risk to their businesses.  The Aon Global Risk Management Survey 2015 also lists business interruption as one of the top ten risks facing companies.

To quote Tony Hayward following the gulf oil blast that killed 11 workers and caused one of the worst environmental disasters in US history:

BP’s contingency plans were inadequate. We were making it up day to day. What was going on was some extraordinary engineering. But when it was played out in the full glare of the media as it was, of course it looked like fumbling and incompetence.”

With this in mind, The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business, held a business case simulation exercise for students on April 15th. The event was cosponsored by The Risk Management Association (a student-led organization) and The Risk Institute. Participating students were divided into teams and presented with a fact-based scenario.  Students were then asked to prepare action strategy against the following “4 R” components:

  • Response (Protect Life and Property, Manage the Incident)
  • Resumption (Resumption of Time Sensitive Operations)
  • Recovery (Recovery of Other Operations)
  • Restoration (Repair/Restore Facilities and Content)

Students worked diligently during the day exercise to think through options, respond to life and safety concerns, communication challenges, manage customer expectations, etc.

Judges for the event were:

  • Keely L. Croxton, Associate Professor of Logistics, Fisher College of Business, The Ohio State University
  • A. Michael Knemeyer, Assistant Professor of Logistics, Fisher College of Business, The Ohio State University, and;
  • Daniel Oglevee, Senior Lecturer in Finance, Academic Director of The Fisher Executive MBA Program, The Ohio State University.

Business Coach for the event was Gregory Clark, a graduate of The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business.  Greg is now Global Lead, Business Continuity DHL Supply Chain. Greg provided very meaningful coaching for the students as they worked through the simulation exercise.

Students were pleased to be able to participate in an exercise that provided the opportunity to exercise material presented in the classroom with a real world, hands-on scenario. The Risk Institute is pleased to have an opportunity to prepare our students for events that they will experience once in business. As has been said on numerous occasions, anyone can manage an organization when things are going well – it is when things become difficult that true leaders emerge.

The session proved thought-provoking for the students and demonstrated The Risk Institute’s unique role in uniting students, industry thought leaders, academics and highly respected practitioners in an ongoing dialog to advance the understanding and evolution of risk management. The Risk Institute’s conversation about risk management is open and collaborative with its relevance across all industries and its potential for competitiveness and growth.

 


For more information about upcoming events, our students, partners or research, visit our website: fisher.osu.edu/centers/risk.

The Risk Management Association – A Bridge Between Students and Risk Professionals

Yuqi Wen 2016

By Yuqi Wen
Fisher College of Business
Class of 2016

 


In September 2012, I was a sophomore, and an email from one of my professors caught my attention. In the email, the professor pointed out the growing importance of the risk industry, and yet he lamented on the lack of a risk group at The Ohio State University serving as a professional organization for students. Several of my classmates and I responded to the challenge, and we partnered with The Risk Institute to build the Fisher College of Business chapter of Risk Management Association (RMA).

RMA

As a bridge between OSU students and risk management professionals, RMA aims to offer prospective graduates opportunities to connect with experienced risk practitioners as well as with public and private organizations operating in a world of continuous and unexpected risk. The reality is that risk management plays a significant role for every company’s sustainable development, and we hope our student organization can help bring best practices to light.

Our organization could not stand alone. We are blessed with the support of The Risk Institute, a consortium of leading academics and forward-thinking companies developing cutting-edge risk management practices. Through collaborations with The Risk Institute, our student members are granted exposure to new research along with a wide variety of prospective employers in the field.

To help advance students in their knowledge and in their involvement in the risk industry, RMA has hosted a series of guest speakers. Among the highlights from the last year are:

  • Greg Adams, director of management and financial reporting at AEP, who spoke on governance and culture
  • Jamie Jones, lead meteorologist at NetJets Aviation, Inc., who discussed weather disruption and its impact on the aviation industry
  • Helen Patton, OSU’s chief information security officer, who spoke about IT security
  • Donovan Gibson, vice president of analytics at JP Morgan Chase who spoke about the important role analytics plays in managing risk
  • Elizabeth Wilber, senior manager of advisory services at EY who spoke about how organizations can better manage and benefit from risk
yuqi wen pace setters 2016

Yuqi Wen was honored with a Pace Setters Award, the college’s top honor, in the spring of 2016.

A favorite event of the RMA students is The Risk Institute’s Annual Conference, held in the fall, in which members have the unique opportunity to volunteer and help coordinate the event. I have attended this conference the last two years, and I personally have benefited from the networking opportunities with faculty from other colleges within OSU and most importantly with industry leaders.

This spring, RMA also held a case simulation competition in which members worked together in teams to utilize their general business knowledge and risk management skills to propose the best solution to the given problem. The RMA’s year concluded with the Annual Banquet, which gave students networking opportunities with risk professionals while raising awareness of RMA and its goals.

My involvement in the RMA has enriched my college experience. Ultimately, it has helped deepen my understanding of risk beyond the classroom and advance my ability to solve problems and to conduct research on the risk industry.


Yuqi Wen served as president of the RMA during the 2015-2016 academic year, and will graduate from Fisher College of Business in May 2016 with a Bachelor of Business Administration, Accounting and Finance.  She is an honor student, has been on the Dean’s List since December 2012, and a recipient of Fisher’s Pace Setters Award in 2016.  After graduation, Wen will begin her career at PricewaterhouseCoopers.

 

Risk Modeling: The Past and the Future

Risk Institute Portraits Fisher Hall - Third Floor Feb-02-2016 Photo by Jay LaPrete ©2016 Jay LaPrete

By  Philip S. Renaud II, MS, CPCU
Executive Director, The Risk Institute
The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business

 


No one can foresee the future, but risk managers are tasked with anticipating and using all resources at their disposal to predict what lies ahead. Risk modeling, based on data analytics, is one of the critical tools any risk practitioner can employ. However, like all things, modeling has undergone a transformation in recent years as more data is available upon which to base the models.

With risk modeling playing an increasingly crucial role in risk management, The Risk Institute at The Ohio State University focused its March Executive Education Session on Risk Modeling: The Past and the Future. Over 70 attendees were at the program from 27 companies and universities that gathered for the presentations and insightful Q&A on the topic.IMG_4839 Crop

The half-day session included a three-person panel of experts moderated by The Risk Institute Academic Director, Dr. Isil Erel. The panel was comprised of:

  • Rongsheng Gong, Vice President, Head of Risk Modeling and Analytics, Huntington National Bank
  • Al Schulman, Vice President (retired), Enterprise Risk and Capital Management, Nationwide

The session focused on the essential nature of risk modeling as a risk management tool and its role for both financial and nonfinancial firms. The speaker presentations centered on how risk models have changed as business, regulatory and economic environments have evolved over time. The impact of the recent financial crises was cited numerous times during the discussion as the speakers highlighted how previous risk models created by industry, banking and government failed to identify the magnitude of the risk impact to multiple business sectors.

The trio of presenters went in-depth for session attendees to understand the evolving, complex and at times volatile economic conditions impacting a firm’s markets and operations.IMG_4971 Crop

According to our speakers, five key lessons on effective risk modeling include:

  1. The financial crisis has led to both an increased knowledge of risk models and a decreased confidence in those same models.
  1. Since the crisis, new model considerations include counterparty risk, funding liquidity, regime-switching and government guarantees.
  1. The current system of banks, insurance companies and nations is highly and dynamically connected.
  1. Managing model risk includes multiple levels of validation for every step of its development.
  1. No matter how sophisticated the risk model, the human element is still the most important.

The session emphasized how financial firms since the recession have adapted their risk models to the changing business, economic and regulatory environments. Additionally the speakers focused on the interconnectedness of institutions (banks, insurers and government) and how that plays a vital role in managing how risk is modeled.

The session proved thought-provoking and demonstrated The Risk Institute’s unique role in uniting industry thought leaders, academics and highly respected practitioners in an ongoing dialog to advance the understanding and evolution of risk management. The Risk Institute’s conversation about risk management is open and collaborative with its relevance across all industries and its potential as a tool for competitiveness and growth.


For more information about upcoming events, our students, partners or research, visit our website: fisher.osu.edu/centers/risk.