Navigating the Changing Risk Landscape 

On September 26, 2023, GRI members from across the financial sector convened at the Globe and Mail Centre in Toronto for GRI’s annual summit. It was the best-attended GRI summit ever, and hundreds more participants joined online.  

Here is what some of our members had to say:

“Time well spent – both listening to leading experts on topical matters and connecting with colleagues facing similar challenges addressing the key risks we face today.”
“There’s so much value that comes from these sessions through what we learn, what we hear and who we meet.”
“Summits like this one are really important because it helps us stay ahead of the curve…The experience is something you could never have anywhere else.”

See below for descriptions and video of the day’s sessions.

Summit Recap

Opening Video

The summit experience was kicked off to an electrifying start that set the stage for the informative sessions to follow. Watch the video here.

Opening Remarks – Sonia Baxendale

GRI President and CEO Sonia Baxendale talks about the generational shift transforming the role of corporations, from profit centres to members of the global community. Watch the video here.

A New Era of Risk – Niall Ferguson

Renowned historian Professor Niall Ferguson delivered an engaging talk about the historical law of unintended consequences. (Video not available)

He discussed its relevance in today’s context, in the realms of monetary policy, public health, politics, geopolitics, renewable energy and AI. 

Ferguson described the law of unintended consequences as “the only law of history”. He highlighted examples, pointing out how decisions about interest rates, lockdowns, government spending, relations with China, the shift to electric vehicles and the rapid adoption of ChatGPT might lead to undesirable outcomes. 

In a fireside chat with GRI’s Sonia Baxendale, Ferguson expressed concerns about the ongoing war in Ukraine, suggesting it has the potential to become a drawn-out war of attrition similar to the Korean war. He also cautioned against over-reliance on AI language models like ChatGPT for critical thinking. Emphasizing the importance of insightful leadership, he indicated that we should seek leaders who possess both a deep understanding of history and an appreciation for science fiction.       

Adapting in Uncertain Times: CRO Insights on Managing Risks

Industry-leading CROs unravel the complexities of adapting to global uncertainty, offering a glimpse into the front lines of risk management in the financial sector. Watch the video here.

Safeguarding the Integrity and Security of the Financial System

OSFI Superintendent Peter Routledge shares details about the regulator’s new focus on integrity and security in light of concerns about foreign interference. Watch the video here.

"Sleepwalking" Towards a Global Polycrisis?

Former Bank of Canada Deputy Governor William White asks whether environmental, political and economic systems could all be part of a cascading system failure with dire consequences. Watch the video here

Navigating Geopolitical Risk and China Challenges

Listen to Margaret McCuaig-Johnston from the China Strategic Risks Institute issue stark warnings about looming humanitarian, economic and geopolitical crises in China. Watch the video here.

Delivering on the Climate Agenda

Climate change is real. Hear industry sustainability leaders discuss how to measure the associated physical risks and integrate into them into the larger risk frameworks of their organizations. Watch the video here.

Managing People Risk in the Post-Covid Environment

The pandemic changed the game. An engaging discussion about how hybrid work, mental health and talent retention are keeping people managers up at night. Watch the video here.

Decision-Making in the Face of Uncertainty

Global experts contemplate how to make decisions on climate change when decision-makers can’t even agree on the problem. Watch the video here.

Artificial Intelligence and Human Judgment

AI is here, but how will the financial sector roll it out? Technology leaders discuss the myriad risks and opportunities related to AI, and how industry players are likely to approach them. Watch the video here.

Closing Remarks

GRI Chair Mark Hughes wraps up the summit and puts GRI’s brief history into context. Watch the video here.


Click here to see speakers and bios.