Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat
Symbol of the Government of Canada

ARCHIVED - Integrated Risk Management Implementation Guide

Warning This page has been archived.

Archived Content

Information identified as archived on the Web is for reference, research or recordkeeping purposes. It has not been altered or updated after the date of archiving. Web pages that are archived on the Web are not subject to the Government of Canada Web Standards. As per the Communications Policy of the Government of Canada, you can request alternate formats on the "Contact Us" page.


Appendix E

Sample Risk Identification Lists

A hierarchy of possible risks displayed in a pyramid model.

A hierarchy of possible risks. Cross-functional or interdisciplinary teams would be best suited to develop an inventory of potential risks in a holistic and comprehensive manner.

Source: Canadian Centre for Management Development, A Foundation for Developing Risk Management Learning Strategies in the Public Service (2001)

Potential Sources of Risk

Description of Views or Perspective Strategic Perspective

Sources that can impede the achievement of mandate and objectives

Business Line Perspective

Sources that can impede the achievement of business line or program objectives

Corporate Management Perspective

Sources that may not effectively support the achievement of results

Compliance Perspective

Sources that could embarrass the organization or cause liabilities for not complying with laws and regulations

Government Agenda Perspective

Sources that are critical to ensure alignment with government-wide commitments

Sources of Risk Strategic
  • policy and strategy
  • corporate reputation
  • political factors
  • public expectations
  • stakeholder relations
  • media relations
  • industry developments
  • changing demographics
  • globalization
  • national security threats
  • business continuity
  • emergency preparedness
  • technology trends
  • economic trends
  • competitive trends
Business Line
  • business line activities
  • program activities
  • program delivery
  • client services
  • service delivery
  • alliances, partnerships
  • major projects
Corporate Management
  • structure and reporting relationships
  • planning and priority setting
  • budgeting and resource allocation
  • expenditure management
  • revenue and cost recovery
  • transfer payments
  • procurement and contracting
  • financial management
  • performance management
  • project management
  • change management
  • inventory management
  • asset management
  • human resources
  • information and knowledge
  • information technology
  • communications
  • risk management
  • funding and appropriations
  • statutory reporting
  • compliance with laws and regulations
  • compliance with central agency policies
  • agreements and contractual obligations
  • workplace health and safety
  • environmental protection
  • security, privacy and confidentiality
  • legal liabilities and litigation
Governement Agenda
  • citizen focus
  • values and ethics
  • accountability
  • transparency
  • responsible spending
  • client satisfaction
  • Government On-Line
  • improved reporting
  • modern comptrollership
  • fairness and equity
  • Results for Canadians
  • modern HRM
  • integrated risk management

Source: Risk-based Internal Audit Priorities Toolset for Small Departments and Agencies (March 2003). Available at:

blank blank

A Sample of Risks Subject to
Government Intervention


  • automobiles, motorcycles
  • trucks
  • railroads
  • aircraft
  • ships, barges, other watercraft
  • pipelines (oil, gas, water, commodities)
  • electricity (especially electromagnetic fields)


  • climate change
  • air, water, land pollution (e.g. acid rain, urban smog, contaminated sites)
  • forestry practices
  • toxic substances
  • biodiversity and endangered species
  • fisheries
  • ozone depletion

Natural Resources

  • access and use of renewable resources (fish, timber, water, wildlife)
  • access to and use of non-renewable resources (petroleum, coal, natural gas, minerals)

Consumer Products

  • automobiles (e.g. seatbelts, airbags, bumpers, running lights, fuel standards)
  • drugs (for humans and animals)
  • medical devices
  • children's toys, clothes, cribs, car seats, etc.
  • explosives
  • pleasure boats (e.g. Jet Ski)
  • tires


  • food contamination during production and distribution
  • food labelling
  • pesticide application and residuals in food
  • bovine growth hormone in milk
  • irradiation
  • genetically modified foods


  • nuclear power
  • biotechnology
  • genetic engineering
  • information technologies


  • workplace safety

Economic or Financial

  1. related to financial instruments and institutions
    • securities (debt and equity)
    • banking and other financial institutions
    • insurance companies
    • pension plans
    • deposit insurance
  2. related to purchase of products
    • product labelling, including trademarks
    • weights and measures
    • misleading advertising or marketing practices
    • quality assurance (e.g. birth control devices)
    • efficacy of professional services
  3. related to income level and flow
    • employment insurance
    • Canada Pension Plan
    • welfare payments
    • workers' compensation
    • crop insurance
    • disaster relief (ad hoc)

Human Safety

  1. Infrastructure
    • dams, bridges, utility lines, roadways, pipelines
  2. Natural disasters
    • weather events (hurricanes, tornados, floods, ice storms, blizzards, droughts, avalanches)
    • earthquakes
    • forest or grassland fires


  1. National security
    • defence against invasion or attack
    • protection against subversion from within
  2. Personal security of citizens
    • police
    • firefighters


  • human rights (including those in the Charter)
  • collective bargaining
  • humane treatment of animals

Adapted from W. T. Stanbury, 2000, unpublished working paper submitted to CCMD Roundtable members.

Umbrella of Risk

Example of risks displayed in an 'Umbrella of Risk' chart

Source: Presentation by Kevin W. Knight, Ottawa, June 2003