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Book Review: Principles of Risk Analysis, 2nd Edition

Principles of Risk Analysis: Decision Making Under Uncertainty; by Charles Yoe. CRC Press; 816 pages: $219.95.

1020-NationalSecurity-BookRview-Principles-of-Risk-Analysis.jpgEconomics professor Charles Yoe has written a clear and comprehensive work on risk in the second edition of Principles of Risk Analysis: Decision Making Under Uncertainty. It will enable public and private sector leaders and their teams to leverage risk analysis for informed decision making in today’s VUCA—volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous—environment.

Specifically, there are three reasons why this book might be of value for both the generalist and the specialist. First, it has depth and breadth. The work consists of 22 chapters; the first six chapters focus on science and principles, while the remaining chapters focus on applications. New chapters offer fresh insights on risk communication, message development, and telling your story.

The second reason to read this book is its applicability to multiple communities of practice. Popular risk standards COSO and ISO 31000 are discussed, although the wide perspective on risk analysis will prove to be of great value for any risk professional.

Third, the book offers the reader an extensive toolbox for risk assessment, with discussions of nearly 50 tools that can be used in qualitative and quantitative analysis. The author provides insight on how each technique is used, and its strengths and weaknesses, along with examples to assist the reader in choosing the appropriate tool.

In sum, Principles of Risk Analysis offers a mix of rationale and applications, depth and breadth, and a wealth of risk analysis tools that will resonate and be of great value to the security risk professional.

Reviewer: Rachid Kerkab has two decades of experience in criminology, strategy, risk, and resilience.