10. Theme: Risk


PRINCE2 Foundation

The course is part of this learning path

The Risk Theme - Part 1

The course focuses on the components of the method and how they help to structure project delivery. Delegates should note that evening work will be assigned which is not expected to exceed two hours per night.

Specific course content will include:

PRINCE2 Overview

  • The structure of the method and the guide will be introduced before we discuss the context within which a PRINCE2 project operates.
  • Principles
  • The seven PRINCE2 principles provide the framework for managing the project and are built on good practice developed from successful and failed projects.
  • Themes and Processes


The seven PRINCE2 themes are aspects of the project that must be continually addressed and integrated as the project journeys through its life cycle.

  1. Business Case
  2. Organization
  3. Quality
  4. Plans
  5. Risk
  6. Change
  7. Progress


The seven PRINCE2 processes encompass the chronological activities that are required to direct, manage and deliver the project successfully. The activities include pre-project, initiation and delivery, and end with project closure.

  1. Starting up a Project
  2. Directing a Project
  3. Initiating a Project
  4. Controlling a Stage
  5. Managing Product Delivery
  6. Managing a Stage Boundary
  7. Closing a Project


PRINCE2® is a [registered] trade mark of AXELOS Limited, used under permission of AXELOS Limited. All rights reserved.

The Swirl logo™ is a trade mark of AXELOS Limited, used under permission of AXELOS Limited. All rights reserved


- Welcome to module 10 part one. We're going to be looking at the risk theme. We're going to be looking at the definition of risk. We're going to be looking at the requirements for risk in your PRINCE2 project. We're also going to be looking at the management products that you're going to need as well. And then we will take a look at the risk management procedure. The definition of risk is in front of us at the moment and this is an uncertain event or set of events that, should it occur, will have an effect on the achievement of objectives. So what are your project objectives? Are there any uncertain things that could affect them? That's what we're going to be looking at here. That's the purpose of our risk theme is to think about how we're going to deal with that. And not all risks are bad things. Some of them are good things. They're uncertain things that can be considered as opportunities. They could have a positive effect on our objectives. So if there's an uncertain event that could have a positive effect on our objective, we'll call it an opportunity. But if it will have a negative effect on our objectives, then we'll call it threat. So I think it's quite good for you to just get in this mindspace of thinking that not all risks are bad things. Some of them are good and we want to make them happen. And so what are we gonna do about that? Obviously not all of them are positives. Some of them are negative and we'll treat them as threats. We'll try and find ways to either prevent them or reduce the chance of them occurring. So we will need to think about that too. If we look at the requirements in PRINCE2 for dealing with risk, then we start with thinking about defining the approach. They really want us to have an approach for dealing with risk. And this means that we're going to need to, in most cases, write it down in the risk management approach. So what is the strategy that we have for dealing with risk around here? You may well be influenced by the corporate or program-level strategies, or strategies that your customer has regarding risk. And so we might just reuse their strategies in our risk management approach, and it will then describe how risk will be managed in this project. So what techniques, what reports, what responsibilities are we going to have? PRINCE2 also tells us that we should maintain a risk register. And so therefore, strangely enough, an important management product for us is the risk register. So you can find both of these products in appendix a. So it's A.24 for the risk management approach and A.25 for the risk register. The risk register provides a record of our identified risks and it doesn't always have to be a complex, bespoke risk management system. It could be a spreadsheet, a whiteboard, flip chart, who knows. As long as you have a record of your risks. So it really depends on how complex your project is and how risky it is and how much control you want us to... the form that your risk register will take, and the depth of your risk management approach. So if you think more about the requirements, we also need to manage our risk throughout the project. So we don't just have a risk workshop right at start when we're initiating and then just forget about our risks for the rest of the project. We've got to keep reviewing our risks as we go through the project to make sure that some of those risks that we thought were maybe quite unimportant haven't just kind of escalated in severity as we've gone through. So we do reflect on our risks and update our risk register accordingly. And we use continuous improvement. We're always learning from experience. Of course that's our principle in PRINCE2, to improve what we do as you go along. So we use any lessons that we've learned from dealing with early risks to help us inform how we're going to respond and deal with later risks. So definitely we want to use our lessons as you go through. But that's it for the requirements and the management products. And so that finishes part one.

About the Author
Learning Paths

A hard working, self-motivated and dedicated IT Consultant with extensive experience and a proven track record in the areas of Management, Networking, Communications and Security. A capable organiser, quick to grasp and make good use of new ideas and concepts. Reliable and conscientious in all work aspects. Possesses exceptional interpersonal skills and utilises communicative abilities to build, develop and maintain effective relationships. A motivational and inspirational manager, who enjoys being part of a successful and productive team, and thrives in highly pressurised and challenging working environments.