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Article | WTW Research Network Newsletter

WTW Research Network Q4 2023 Newsletter

December 21, 2023

Updates on a new research partnership, articles on the challenges of climate modelling, volcanic risk, flood insurance pools under pressure, emerging risks and interconnected risks, with industry focus on aviation decarbonisation and geopolitical risks for the power industry.
Climate|Cyber Risk Management|Medioambiental|ESG and Sustainability|Financial, Executive and Professional Risks (FINEX)|Insurance Consulting and Technology|Willis Research Network
Climate Risk and Resilience|Geopolitical Risk

COP 28 again highlighted the significant work needed to identify real solutions to support a sustainable green transition and limit global temperature rises. Catastrophe modeling can play a crucial role in quantifying climate risk exposures, supporting corporate risk management and pricing climate risk. This year we have been pleased to form a number of new partnerships, supporting a deeper understanding of risk and feeding our catastrophe modeling research and innovation. We are delighted to announce a new partnership with Prof. Erica Thompson and the London Mathematical Laboratory to support our climate and catastrophe modelers better understand the depth and criteria of available modeling tools, and ultimately allow us to provide a better, fit-for-purpose view of risk.

We are also happy to provide follow-ups to the popular Natural Catastrophe webinar series that ran throughout 2023. Read reports on how to Get ahead of wildfire risks in 2024: Strategies for mitigation, management and measurement exploring how unprecedented wildfire seasons devastated properties and ecosystems from Europe to Canada throughout 2023; and on Navigating named windstorm risks: mitigation and management strategies quantifying the increasing risk from intense tropical cyclones in a changing climate.

In 2023 accelerated technological advancements and tools like ChatGPT have heightened the need for robust strategies to embrace digital disruption. The rising prominence of ESG has encouraged companies to integrate ESG considerations into their risk management frameworks. Geopolitical tensions and conflict continue to disrupt supply chains, increase commodity prices and impact financial markets. Our Geopolcast podcast series has quickly established itself, providing commentary and expert opinion on some of the most pressing issues globally. Recent episodes explore the rising risk of cyber threats, the geopolitical impacts of climate change, and the power and pitfalls of sanctions. Please do get in touch with areas of interest you would like us to explore.

Below we include some of our more recent insight pieces, including thoughts from attending a recent White House Council of Economic Advisors roundtable on climate modeling and a piece co-written with Gordon Woo, Catastrophist at Moody’s RMS, exploring new approaches for addressing the gaps in volcanic risk modeling. We hope you enjoy them.

Wishing you all the best of the season,


Table of Contents


  1. 01

    A higher standard for climate risk modeling?

    By Scott St. George | November 10, 2023

    Business relies on a suite of tools to weigh risks from heat, flood, & other hazards. The White House wants next-generation climate analytics to be more transparent, reliable, and easier to access.


  2. 02

    The potential for rate-induced climate tipping points in insurance markets

    It is often argued that insurers can manage climate change risk simply by using the annual policy cycle to reprice and rebalance portfolios. But what happens if the rate of change is too fast?


  3. 03

    Volcanic risk and insurance: The untapped potential of downward counterfactual perspectives

    By Gordon Woo and James Dalziel | November 30, 2023

    Volcanic risks are less frequent than other natural disasters, but their unpredictability poses a unique challenge. Should insurers incorporate downward counterfactual analysis into risk management frameworks to better prepare for these rare but catastrophic events?


  4. 04

    Interconnected risk: Risk management techniques to outsmart complex futures

    By Lucy Stanbrough and Frederick Gentile | November 29, 2023

    Traditional risk management can prove less effective when tackling complex and inter-connected risks. How can you identify, quantify and mitigate inter-related risks?


  5. 05

    Not quite the end of uncertainty for Emerging Risks? New perspectives are coming over the horizon

    By Hayden Taylor | December 4, 2023

    In recent years organisations around the world have seen their strategy and plans disrupted by new and familiar risks in ways unimaginable 15 years ago.


  6. 06

    The polycrisis and the energy trilemma: the geopolitical risk landscape in 2023

    By Hélène Galy | November 8, 2023

    In this article from the 2023 WTW Power Market Review, we look at the impact of the current geopolitical risk landscape on the power sector.


  7. 07

    Part one: The future of aviation fuel, the decarbonization challenge

    By Charlotte Dubec and Daniel Bannister | October 20, 2023

    Decarbonizing aviation will be a long, challenging and expensive process. A better industry could emerge though.


  8. 08

    Climate-related financial risks and community vulnerability in India

    By Anu Jogesh and Daniel Bannister | November 15, 2023

    As India's financial sector addresses its climate risks, it must consider the vulnerabilities of its small borrowers, offering valuable lessons for emerging economies on building just transitions.


  9. 09

    Rising seas, Changing policies

    By Neil Gunn | November 14, 2023

    Pricing structures in insurance programmes are determined by todays flood risk. Flood insurance programmes needs to be overhauled to be more dynamic to ensure viability in the face of climate change.


  10. 10

    Enhancing Disaster Resilience: Addressing Basis Risk in Parametric Insurance

    By Rana Imroze Palwishah, Batsirai Mazviona and Simon Sølvsten | December 18, 2023

    Parametric insurance operates on a simple principle. Instead of compensating for direct losses incurred, it provides coverage for a predetermined amount, often scaled according to the severity of the event.


Also of interest

WTW RN Team Contacts

Head of People Risks Research,
Managing Director of WTW Research Network
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Head of Technology Risks Research,
Programme Director and Climate & Resilience Hub
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