Which Global Risks Have Worsened During the Pandemic?

What Global Risks Have Worsened Since COVID-19

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The Briefing

  • A new report from WEF found that social cohesion and overall livelihood have worsened the most since the start of the pandemic
  • Policy measures and economic impacts from COVID-19 have exacerbated inequality, which has increased polarization and resentment among communities

The Global Risks That Have Gotten Worse Since COVID-19

Each year, the World Economic Forum (WEF) puts together its Global Risks Report, an analysis of the top risks that pose a threat to the world.

The report includes data from nearly 1,000 surveyed leaders, across various organizations and regions. In this year’s report, respondents were asked which global risks have gotten worse since the start of the pandemic.

Here’s what they said.

Social Threats

According to respondents, the erosion of social cohesion is the global risk that has intensified the most since the start of the global pandemic. The WEF defines this as the loss of social capital or social stability.

Risk Category % of respondents
Social cohesion erosion Societal 27.8%
Livelihood crises Societal 25.5%
Climate action failure Environmental 25.4%
Mental health deterioration Societal 23.0%
Extreme weather Environmental 22.7%
Debt crises Economic 13.8%
Cybersecurity failures Technological 12.4%
Infectious diseases Societal 10.9%
Digital inequality Technological 10.5%
Backlash against science Societal 9.5%
Biodiversity loss Environmental 8.4%
Geoeconomic confrontations Geopolitical 8.2%
Human environmental damage Environmental 7.8%
Youth disillusionment Societal 7.1%
Interstate relations fracture Geopolitical 7.0%
Prolonged stagnation Economic 6.9%
Asset bubble burst Economic 6.7%
Social security collapse Societal 6.2%
Involuntary migration Societal 5.4%
Adverse tech advances Technological 5.3%
Tech governance failure Technological 4.5%
Geopolitical resource contestation Geopolitical 4.4%
Digital power concentration Technological 4.3%
Public infrastructure failure Societal 4.2%
Industry collapse Economic 4.1%
Price instability Economic 3.3%
Commodity shocks Economic 3.0%
Interstate conflict Geopolitical 2.9%
Natural resource crises Environmental 2.7%
State collapse Geopolitical 2.6%
IT infrastructure breakdown Technological 2.4%
Multilateralism collapse Geopolitical 2.2%
Illicit economic activity Economic 2.2%
Pollution harms to health Societal 1.9%
Terrorist attacks Geopolitical 1.6%
Geophysical disasters Environmental 0.8%
Weapons of mass destruction Geopolitical 0.3%

Inequality existed long before COVID-19, but the pandemic has only made things worse.

For example, employment recovery has been uneven across the United States. High-wage workers have seen employment rates bounce back fairly quickly after their Spring 2020 slump, while low-wage workers haven’t recovered at the same rate.

As of August 2021, employment rates for those making below $27K a year were still down 25% compared to pre-pandemic levels.

Environmental Threats

In addition to societal threats, a couple environmental risks made it to the top of the list as well. Both Climate action failure and extreme weather were in the top five.

Considering how difficult it’s been for international governments to collaborate on COVID-19 relief efforts, respondents feel less than optimistic that we’ll manage to seamlessly deal with the chaos that could come from environmental risks, which are similarly complex.

Which global risk do you think has worsened the most since the start of the pandemic?

Where does this data come from?

Source: WEF Global Risks Report 2022
Details: Data in this report is from the The Global Risks Perception Survey (GRPS), the World Economic Forum’s source of original risks data. Survey responses were collected from 8 September to 12 October 2021. See the report for full details on methodology.

The post Which Global Risks Have Worsened During the Pandemic? appeared first on Visual Capitalist.

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