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Interesting Discussion of Risk Displacement on Radio 4

There was an interesting discussion of risk displacement on Radio 4’s Today programme this morning in the context of the forthcoming Euro 2016 Finals. Sir Bob Broadhurst, formerly of the Metropolitan Police, was discussing terrorist threats; and specifically how, as we improve security at the most obvious targets, the terrorists turn their attention to ‘softer’ targets. However, the underlying principle of risk displacement – we do not get rid of risk, we simply change the form of the risk – has much wider applicability. Whenever we take action to mitigate a risk we must be very alert to the possibility that we have simply made the risk less obvious, or indeed created an entirely new risk.