The missing strategic link - human capital knowledge, and risk in the finance industry - two mini case studies



Publication Details

Royal, C., Evans, J. & Windsor, S. S. (2014). The missing strategic link - human capital knowledge, and risk in the finance industry - two mini case studies. Venture Capital: an international journal of entrepreneurial finance, 16 (3), 189-206.


Understanding risks faced by firms and their reactions in response to those risks requires analysis of the ambiguities inherent in human behaviour. Yet, evidence from two case studies on investment and insurance professionals in the finance industry suggests that more focus on human capital may be prudent in reducing epistemic uncertainty particularly considering recent events in which the investing public has had a crisis of confidence in corporate leaders. It is particularly appropriate for regulators to provide a context in which market participants exercise due diligence by ensuring that human capital is enhanced by as much knowledge as possible where more human capital knowledge could reduce both risk in investments and insurance, ultimately challenging the sustainability of organisations during periods of epistemic uncertainty. This paper suggests that investment analysts, fund managers and insurance professionals lack the appropriate competencies, skills, knowledge and abilities required to meet the demands of the analysis of human capital in relation to understanding risk. Such competencies include disciplinary knowledge of sustainable human resource management (HRM) and organisational change systems and their links to corporate performance and risk mitigation. An alignment with HRM/HR that is equally focused on internal and external risk is of strategic importance for such professionals and their organisations in human capital risk mitigation.

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