Bloomberg News

‘Experts’ Expect Major Geopolitical Disruption, Survey Says

January 23, 2012

(Updates with definition of geopolitical disruption in second paragraph. See DAVOS <GO> for more on the World Economic Forum and EXT4 <GO> for more on the European debt crisis.)

Jan. 23 (Bloomberg) -- A survey of 345 “global experts” from business, government, international organizations and academia found most expect a “major geopolitical disruption” in the next year, according to the World Economic Forum.

The percentage expecting a major disruption rose to 54 percent from 36 percent three months ago, the Geneva-based forum said today in an e-mailed statement. A geopolitical disruption refers to a political clash that has international implications, such as a territorial conflict, terrorist act or civil war.

Most respondents remained pessimistic about the global economy and 60 percent lack confidence in global governance, or the ability of political leaders to deal with risks, unchanged from three months earlier, the survey found.

“The possibility of a geoeconomic disruption, such as sovereign default, is to some degree reflected in the market, but a major geopolitical disruption clearly is not,” Lee Howell, managing director of the World Economic Forum responsible for the annual meeting and the Global Risks Report 2012, said in a statement.

The respondents are members of the forum’s Network of Global Agenda Councils, which includes policy makers, academics and business leaders.

--Editors: Steve Bailey, Jon Menon

To contact the reporter on this story: Christine Harper in New York at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: John Fraher at

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