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Board risk committees

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  • Publish date: 20 October 2011
  • Archived on: 09 June 2015

Let me make a prediction: like them or loathe them, board risk committees are here to stay.

I recall clearly the first audit committee meeting I attended as a senior audit manager. At the time this new committee structure seemed to be excessive, but now, some twenty years or more on, they’re embedded in the fabric of our organisations, private sector, public sector or not-for-profit. Nobody questions the benefit of audit committees. My prediction is that board risk committees are going to be as ubiquitous as audit committees and before too many reporting seasons are gone, it will seem strange that we ever managed without them.

Launched on the financial sector by Sir David Walker with a view to changing the behaviour of banks and other financial institutions (BOFI’s), picked up by the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee as a way of challenging the hegemony of the Big-4, more and more organisations are looking at risk committees as a way of dealing with some of the big risk issues that are lurking out there, and which do not really belong on the audit committee agenda.