"Managing risk as a development strategy" by Rasmus Heltberg and Kyla Wethli, World Bank

Past Event

26 November 2013, 1:30pm - 3:00pm

Lecture Theatre, Oxford Martin School
34 Broad Street (corner of Holywell and Catte Streets), Oxford, OX1 3BD

Two members of the core team, Rasmus Heltberg and Kyla Wethli, responsible for the World Banks' World Development Report 2014 will talk about the findings in the report.

Summary: The world has suffered a multitude of crises in recent years. Financial and economic turmoil have disrupted the world economy through loss of income, jobs, and social stability. Intense natural disasters have devastated communities from Haiti to Japan. Concerns about global warming have grown, as have fears about the spread of deadly contagious diseases. How can people, communities, and countries become more resilient to such risks?

No less important are the missed development opportunities that arise when necessary risks are not taken. Many people, and especially the poor, are often reluctant to take the risks necessary to pursue opportunity because they fear the negative consequences. Failure to act can trap people in poverty, leaving them vulnerable to negative shocks and even less able to pursue opportunities that could improve their well-being.

The WDR 2014 argues that the inability to manage risk properly poses significant obstacles to ending poverty and boosting shared prosperity. It shows that effective risk management can be a powerful instrument for development by saving lives, averting economic losses, unleashing opportunities, and helping people build better, more secure futures.

The WDR 2014 calls for individuals and institutions to move from being “crisis fighters” to becoming “proactive and systematic risk managers.” It provides abundant evidence that recognising and preparing for risk pays off. Recognising that people face obstacles in managing risk, however, it argues that risk management requires shared action and responsibility at different levels of society, from the household to the international community.

Chair: Professor Ian Goldin, Director, Oxford Martin School and Professor of Globalisation and Development, University of Oxford

For more information and to download the Report, please visit: http://www.worldbank.org/wdr2014

Rasmus Heltberg is a Lead Evaluation Officer with the World Bank and a member of the core team for the World Development Report 2014. Rasmus has written extensively on poverty, vulnerability, social policy, natural resource management, and adaptation to climate change. Before joining the World Bank in 2002, he was Associate Professor of Development Economics at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark, from where he also holds a PhD in development economics..

Kyla Wethli is an economist with expertise in macroeconomic policy and analysis, and a member of the core team for the World Development Report 2014. Before joining the WDR team, she was an economic attaché to the British Embassy in Washington, DC and worked for Her Majesty’s Treasury in London. Kyla holds an MSc in Economics from the London School of Economics and Political Science.