Jul 20, 2022

The Value of Peer Learning in Risk Management

Davor Kozina, Head of Service for Coordination of Internal Control System Development at the Croatian Ministry of finance, shares his impressions and main learning takeaways from the recent workshop that looked into the practical implementation of risk management in the public sector.

“When I received information that a workshop on risk management was being organized, I thought that it would be again one of those workshops where trainers would theoretically discuss risks and talk about how risk management should look in practice.
If hadn’t taken part in CEF workshops before, I’d have left it to other colleagues.

However, given that I have been dealing with this topic for many years, and there are also plans to update our “Guidelines for risk management in the public sector entities” (2017), which I personally helped draft, I decided to participate in the workshop. I wanted to hear the experiences of other countries in this rather complex area, especially since it is the public sector, not the private sector.

Fortunately, the workshop had very little theory. It was mostly about exercises and the exchange of good practices between participants. Some of the exercises (playing different roles in the risk management process) presented by the trainers are very practical and useful for me as a coach in this area.

I hoped that this workshop would give me the opportunity to network and meet colleagues from other countries. And so it did.

The biggest benefit was hearing and seeing examples of good practices by colleagues from other countries, and risk management models that they have successfully applied in public sector institutions. Interesting examples of good practices will also serve in updating the existing risk management guidelines. During networking and workshop breaks, I realized that there are similar problems regarding the practical implementation of risk management in other countries.

In the future, this topic should be addressed from the point of view of managers who have successfully implemented risk management in the public sector. Risks are most often talked about and thought about by internal auditors and appointed risk coordinators, and these people are usually trainers at such workshops. However, managers are the persons who are responsible for the realization of goals, and for the management of the budget with which they will realize those goals. Therefore, managers are responsible for risk management, and so it would be interesting to hire as trainers managers who have successfully implemented risk management in their institutions.”