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RMA’s Summer Reading List

Planning on doing some summer reading?

We asked a few risk authors for their book recommendations. So put away those risqué novels and settle in with a good risk read on the beach or lake this summer. Here are some suggestions.

Up first is Mauro Guillén, dean at the Cambridge Judge Business School in the UK and author of “2030: How Today's Biggest Trends Will Collide and Reshape the Future of Everything.” Guillén’s book recommends thinking about how different risks or trends-- from demographic changes to digital transformations-- are converging to create new opportunities. Longer life spans, lower population growth, along with the changing role of women in the workplace, are likely to create a new dynamic when it comes to how people save and spend money, and the types of financial products they buy. 

Guillén has a few summer book recommendations, starting with “Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction” by Philip Tetlock and Dan Gardner. The book begins by looking at prediction tournaments, where everyday people are asked to anticipate future events. Often, the layman’s forecasts are more accurate than the experts. Why? Experts tend to let preconceived notions or biases cloud their judgments. The authors use this experience to help readers understand how to better predict future events.

Guillén’s second recommendation is “Uncharted: How Uncertainty Can Power Change” by Margaret Heffernan.  Guillén says this book is in many ways a counterpoint to “Superforecasting.” Instead of exploring the best way to anticipate the future, “Uncharted” focuses on adapting and embracing change. The idea is not to be afraid of uncertainty and risk, but to embrace it as something that can spur imagination and creativity. Guillén suggests reading these two books together to inspire divergent ways to conceptualize risk.


The RMA also spoke with Linda Tuck Chapman, CEO of Third-Party Risk Institute. Tuck Chapman’s book “Third-Party Risk Management: Driving Enterprise Value,” explores how banks can minimize risks from third parties, and urges readers to consider more broadly how particular vetting practices help organizations better manage third-party risk. This often means identifying and prioritizing the most critical tasks and regularly reviewing when and how third-party vendors need to be vetted.


When it comes to summer reading, Tuck Chapman recommends “The Trusted Advisor” by David Maister, Charles Green, and Robert Galford. The book provides guidance on how to talk with people and earn their trust, which Tuck Chapman says is critical for risk managers who often must work across dotted lines on organizational charts to manage third-party risk. “Risk management is not an island. These [interpersonal] skills never get old,” she said.

A second book Tuck Chapman recommends is “Weapons of Math Destruction” by Cathy O’Neil. A lot of books written by quants are difficult to digest, she says, but this book is an easy and entertaining read and can really help to simplify risk modeling.


So grab your bookmarks and get reading. And if you have other book suggestions, please send them our way!