Principles of risk decision-making

RSI investigators have elaborated ten fundamental principles of risk decision-making, summarized in the table below.  These ten principles will provide valuable guidance on addressing current and future risk issues facing civil societies worldwide.  The application of these principles to specific risk decisions is explored in the recently published manuscript, “Principles of Risk Decision-making”.

P1. Risk-based decision makingRisk management resources should be allocated in proportion to the magnitude of established risks that are amenable to mitigation.
P2. Precautionary principleWhere the potential consequences are great, uncertainty should not prevent risk management actions. 
P3. Balancing risks and benefitsWhere appropriate, risks may be taken in light of offsetting benefits.  
P4. Cost-effectivenessRisk reduction actions should be taken in a cost-effective manner, in order to achieve the maximum return on investment of risk management resources.  
P5. Risk toleranceEfforts should be made to reduce risks to the point where they are considered tolerable.  
P6. Zero riskIn most cases, the ultimate goal of zero risk will not be attainable.  
P7. Risk equityUnavoidable risks should be shared in an equitable manner, and not disproportionately borne by specific groups or individuals.
P8. Stakeholder engagementAll stakeholders should be afforded an opportunity to participate in the process of risk management decision-making.
P9. Openness and transparencyRisk management decisions should be taken in an open and transparent manner, with the basis for the decision clearly and explicitly stated.
P10. FlexibilityRisk management decisions should be flexible, and subject to review as new information becomes available. 

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