Influence - Henderson Risk



Public Affairs, Engagement, Strategy

Public Affairs, Engagement, Strategy

We support our clients to operate successfully in a multitude of challenging environments by helping them build stakeholder trust and social licence to operate. Managing risk is also often a process of managing perceptions. It is about listening to stakeholder concerns and adapting to the operating environment on a local, national and international level.

Any project or development that has an impact on local lives, political events and economic benefit must operate in a permissive environment. This requires communicating with the right groups in a way that is both accessible and sustainable and may include engagement with Government at national and local level, trades unions, communities, interest groups and other stakeholders. Physical security measures should support a social licence to operate in order to yield long term success.

We have great experience in identifying the critical issues and the stakeholders which, if addressed appropriately, will support the smooth running of projects.

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Services we provide include:

  • A public affairs function for companies taking their first step into overseas transactions and investments or to support crisis communications
  • Government engagement: we have assisted mining, agricultural and pharmaceutical companies with their Government engagement strategies
  • Social licence to operate: assessment of a company’s social licence to operate, identification of risks and stakeholder objections and a roadmap to achieve
  • Media and political monitoring services
  • Due diligence: we support our work with independent assessments to ensure political risks facing clients and host nation stakeholders are clearly understood
  • Investigations and assessments: on partner companies, individuals, political exposed people, Anti-Bribery and Corruption risk.


A mining major with operations in a politically challenging African country suffered a breakdown in their government relations and subsequent suspension of their licence to operate.

We initially arranged meetings at the highest level between the Government and client in order to support a framework agreement. We assisted the client build trust with local, national and international stakeholders. We provided crucial support to extended and complex negotiations during which time we managed the expectations of both parties and supported the provision of additional services to generate trust and goodwill between the parties.

Our support contributed to the client successfully reaching agreement with the Government, securing their licence to operate and building significant stakeholder trust.  The Government received advice and guidance to better interface with international companies and present itself as an attractive country for investment.