Last week in a speech to the Wharton School, Secretary Chertoff made the business case for the Department of Homeland Security’s approach to risk management that focuses on helping the private sector help itself. From my perspective, it is the only sustainable approach, and its success depends on the investment community’s appreciation of the value of security.
At last week’s hearing of the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Transportation Security & Infrastructure Protection, several witnesses either directly or indirectly emphasized the point that it is impossible to prevent all disaster, whether natural, terrorist, or accidental. This point highlights that managing risk must be coupled with the idea of resiliency – the “bounce back” after a disaster. The hearing was a positive step with regards to shifting the mindset of disaster preparedness in the U.S.; however, it seems that it will be difficult for Congress to wrap its head around the idea of resiliency with regards to risk-management.