A critical explanation for the 2008 global financial crash was excessive and uncontrolled risk-taking by large systemically important financial institutions. Risk is the bread and butter of banking business, and its accurate assessment and management can make all the difference between a good bank and a bad bank. Given that there existed within HBOS a combination of internal controls and external regulations in this area, and armies of professionals to oversee and monitor, it would be very revealing to understand why the controls failed so extensively. There have been a large number of books and articles about the causes of the crash – an industry of ‘concern’ has been unleashed. Very few scholars were able to predict the timing, depth and severity of the crash, despite economics and finance being a huge academic industry. In terms of risk, finance scholars have been primarily focused on mathematical tools of measurement and management, whose aim is to help measure and profit from risk-taking (see e.g. Roggi and Altman 2013; Hull 2012). The field is full of jargon and technical complexity, with studies showing that this very complexity has generated significant and unforeseeable systemic risks which regulators and management often fail to understand (Shah 1996g, 1996f).