FERMA president Julia Graham represented FERMA as a liaison member at the latest meeting of the International Standards Organisation (ISO) technical committee on risk management. Julia also represents the UK (head of delegation) on behalf of the British Standards Institution. Here is her report.

Members of the ISO Technical Committee 262, responsible for risk management standards, met in Chicago during the week of the 23 September 2013. Fifteen countries represented by more than 30 individuals collected together to debate the future of the two main global risk management standard documents: ISO 31000 ‘Risk Management – Principles and Guidelines’ and ‘Guide 73 Risk Management Vocabulary’.

Over the following four days, the working group debated the breadth of choices, ranging from leaving the documents unchanged for another five years through to major re-writes. In true risk management spirit, a decision tree was eventually created to support the delegates through a sequence of votes before a consensus decision was reached.

On the final day of the meeting, the working group put forward the agreed proposal, to carry out a limited review of both documents, and the group accepted the recommendation by a majority vote. Work will take place over the next months both to draft a design specification in relation to those revisions and to decide if there is a need for any further work items beyond the two standards.

In addition to this main stream of activity during the week, further risk management standard documents were discussed including a planned revision of ISO 31010 Risk Assessment Techniques and publication of the technical report ISO 31004 Guidance for the Implementation of ISO 31000. So, a busy and productive week overall.