Datamaran + DLA Piper

Public Health Risks

Global ESG Regulatory Tracker

Although the pandemic has not yet run its course - and its ultimate impact on public health and the global economy is still uncertain - it has already caused major shifts in key business processes, including compliance and risk management. COVID-19 has suddenly pinned public health to the top of business priorities because the risk materialized.

Both companies and regulators responded reactively to the crisis, as we can see in the uptick in regulatory developments and corporate reporting on the associated risks. For instance, when comparing 2020 annual reports to 2019 annual reports, there is a clear growth in emphasis on public health risks in financial reporting by both top US and EU companies - increasing by 40% and 50%, respectively.

Regulatory developments on public health risks: a commentary from DLA Piper’s experts

Breakdown of regulations for Public Health Risks

The dynamic bar chart shows how the total number of public health regulations (with mandatory and voluntary split) increased in 2020. The correlation between the explosion in public health regulation and the COVID-19 pandemic needs little explanation. However, what the quantitative data doesn’t show is the diversity of approaches across jurisdictions, both between and within countries.

Our COVID-19 Global Overview and Supporting Business Guide tracked governmental responses across more than 50 countries, in areas including financial support, business protection, employment, business operations, financial services and insurance, corporate, insolvency law and access to justice. Our teams across each of those countries examined the extent of the variation across each of those areas, enabling comparison of approaches in countries across Europe, the Middle East and Africa and Asia Pacific. While a number of jurisdictions shared some degree of commonality in general objectives, the substantive variation in the substance and detail reflected a range of regional and local preferences, presenting genuine challenges to global and multi-national businesses.

Our COVID-19 Global Overview and Supporting Business Guide tracked governmental responses across more than 50 countries, in areas including financial support, business protection, employment, business operations, financial services and insurance, corporate, insolvency law and access to justice. Our teams across each of those countries examined the extent of the variation across each of those areas, enabling comparison of approaches in countries across Europe, the Middle East and Africa and Asia Pacific. While a number of jurisdictions shared some degree of commonality in general objectives, the substantive variation in the substance and detail reflected a range of regional and local preferences, presenting genuine challenges to global and multi-national businesses.


While the emphasis on regulation in health care and pharmaceuticals is expected, as public health directives, the data demonstrates the impact of COVID-19 across all sectors, including consumer goods and services, financial services and industrials. One area to watch will be the extent to which regulatory frameworks introduced with relative urgency in response to COVID-19 are maintained in some form as the most immediate impacts start to subside and vaccination programs continue to expand. At very least, we anticipate that measures in relation to tax, travel and health and safety, should be expected to endure and become part of our new normal.

Sector breakdown of regulations public health risks | Datamaran, DLA Piper

Global ESG Regulatory Tracker


Global Insights Report: The Three Big Wake-Up Calls For Boards

The events of 2020 brought risks related to public health, climate change, and diversity, equity, and inclusion to the forefront of public consciousness. Yet, too many businesses are failing to incorporate external and ESG risks into their long-term strategies and to think about business model innovations to reorient towards long-term value creation.

Published jointly by Datamaran and The Conference Board, this Global Insights Report examines how some of the largest public companies reacted to the events of 2020 in their corporate reporting. It considers how senior executives and Boards can apply this knowledge in addressing other systemic and external risks.

Get your complimentary copy now and learn how to use real-time data to monitor the external risks landscape and stay on top of trends.

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