Lead Director Networks: Viewpoints - May 2012

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Introduction

On April 3, 2012, the Lead Director Network (LDN) gathered in Washington, DC, for its 12th meeting. Members examined the role of the board and lead director in overseeing strategic risks. This issue of ViewPoints synthesizes discussions of the LDN members concerning this topic. For further information about this document, see page 11. For a full list of contributing members, see the appendix on page 12.

Executive summary

Boards and lead directors continuously evaluate risks and opportunities at their companies. At the April 3 meeting, members discussed the following issues surrounding their boards’ oversight of strategic risk:

- Changes in risk oversight since the financial crisis (page 2) Since the LDN last discussed risk oversight in the wake of the financial crisis, members have noticed a maturation of both risk management and risk oversight. Although boards have always devoted time and attention to risk oversight, members said that boards are now more thoughtful about risk than they have ever been, more carefully and constantly evaluating risks. However, despite improvements in risk oversight, members agreed that the oversight process will never be perfect.

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