The submission proposes a global insurance and reinsurance model. A new institution receives premiums paid by member countries, in order to insure them against the effects of global catastrophic risks. The institution provides expert advice to the member countries, and financial backing for investments in cooperative projects to achieve risk reduction. Concentrating on a financial task would keep the institution flexible and independent. Decisions would be based on the principles of “effective altruism”, with decision constantly monitored by AI, Big Data and statistical analysis to improve the institution’s priorities and performance. The submission suggests a pilot project being instituted by a smaller number of countries, in order for a first evaluation and improvement round.

Read the entire submission in the New Shape Library.

Len Fisher 

Dr Len Fisher is a scientist, writer and broadcaster, and Senior Research Fellow in the School of Physics at the University of Bristol, UK. His principal current concern is to communicate understanding of systemic risk, slowly developing catastrophic risks, and resilience in the face of risk. He has written a trilogy of books on how societies need to understand and respond to such risks: “Rock, Paper, Scissors: Game Theory in Everyday Life” (on cooperation); “The Perfect Swarm”: The Science of Complexity in Everyday Life” (on making decisions in complex situations); and “Crashes, Crises and Calamities: How We Can Use Science to Read the Early-Warning Signs” (on predicting and dealing with sudden, sometimes catastrophic change in nature and society). He has written several major reports in this area, and made a number of keynote speeches – most recently to the Aon Benfield Hazards Conference “Risk Re-Imagined.” He collaborates with a number of institutions, including the Future of Humanity Institute at the University of Oxford, UK. Further details on his website: