This edition of the global risks report focuses in particular on four key areas: environmental degradation, cybersecurity breaches, economic strains and geopolitical tensions. This report introduces three new series: Future Shocks, Hindsight and Risk Reassessment. The aim of these series is to broaden the report’s analytical reach: each of these elements provides a new lens through which to view the increasingly complex world of global risks.
The 2018 report also presents the results of the latest Global Risks Perception Survey, in which nearly 1,000 experts and decision-makers assess the likelihood and impact of 30 global risks over a 10-year horizon. In this annual survey, environmental risks have grown in prominence in recent years. This trend has continued this year, with all five risks in the environmental category being ranked higher than average for both likelihood and impact over a 10-year horizon. This follows a year characterized by high-impact hurricanes, extreme temperatures and the first rise in CO2 emissions for four years.