In 2022, normal was supposed to make a comeback — it didn’t.

Just as supply chains began to stabilize, war broke out in Europe, China invaded Taiwan’s waters, inflation skyrocketed and central banks began hiking interest rates. While investments in renewable energy infrastructure reached new highs, economies that had been moving away from fossil fuels started reopening coal plants in order to meet their energy needs.

To explore these challenges and their implications for institutional investors, a group of defined benefit plan sponsors, asset managers and academics gathered at the shore of Lake Rosseau in Muskoka, Ont. in August for the Canadian Investment Review’s 2022 Risk Management Conference.

To kick the proceedings off, keynote speaker Janice Gross Stein, founding director of the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto, argued that the lessons of the past half-century would be poor preparation for the challenges of the next one. “Most of us, in this room, started their careers in the 1970s through about 2010. Those were the golden years — there was no war between major powers. It was a long peace period, but with globalization on steroids. . . .  It was a golden age — exceptional and not at all the norm.”

Stein called on institutional investors and academics to come together to rethink risk in the context of the day. In the presentations that followed, the speakers took up the challenge. They noted countless examples of ways that out-of-date thinking causes problems in everything portfolio construction to emerging market investing. They also shared new perspectives — ones better suited to long-term investing in the volatile post-pandemic era.

Here’s what you missed:

Understanding risk in a time of global turmoil

Tactical fixed income strategies for managing risk during volatility

Using renewable energy assets to manage risk in private markets

Navigating rising inflation, minimizing impact on pension plans

Institutional investors have a fiduciary duty to assess, mitigate climate-related risks

How institutional investors can power an investment program from strategy to implementation and oversight

How economic cycles impact global REITs

Multi-asset credit provides income, diversification amid rising volatility

How a four-state probability model can improve investment, risk decisions

How institutional investors can accept, overcome inherent risk misperception

Regulatory, stakeholder pressures moving ESG investing from fringe to centre stage

Long-term implications of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine for emerging market investors

Concordia University re-evaluating integrated investment policy

A look at two pension plan sponsors’ experiences with impact investing

Find out about more Canadian Investment Review events here.