Corporate Survival: The Critical Importance of Sustainability Risk Management

Article excerpt

Corporate Survival: The Critical Importance of Sustainability Risk Management, by Dan R. Anderson, 2005, IUniverse, Lincoln, NE, pp. 427. ISBN: 0595364608

At last! An American president who recognizes that climate change exists! At last! The global risk and insurance business begins to link environmental issues with frequency and severity of loss causing events! And, at last, a carefully written, well-researched textbook that links corporate survival with the issue of sustainability.

I am referring to Dan R. Anderson's book, Corporate Survival: The Critical Importance of Sustainability Risk Management. It is a book that should be read by every corporate risk manager, large account broker, commercial lines underwriter, risk consultant, corporate director, university professor, and university student who plans a career helping businesses manage their risks.

The driving force in this well-organized and "a joy to read" book is the key word "sustainability." As a result of our recent financial crises, we are all too aware of nonsustainable behaviors. While all of us are interested in what has happened in the past as an indicator of the future, this book is all about the future. And whose future? It is about the future of the business world and all of us who cannot escape the results of its powerful decisions.

The author explains why sustainability risk management is a key element of "sustainable development," which is defined as, "development that meets the needs of the present world without compromising the ability of the future generations to meet their own needs." Is it about managing environmental risks including genetically modified crops? Yes, but so much more. Because sustainability risk management includes ethics and social justice, this well-thought-out book includes chapters on new theories of liability, increasing global litigation, reputation risks, social justice risks, stockholder resolutions, corporate governance, and more.

The author effectively makes a business case for sustainability risk management by showing how it can reduce costs, increase long-term profits, and increase long-term share value. …


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