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Office of Management & Finance

Bureau of Internal Business Services

BIBS is the provider of central services for the City of Portland

Research Tips




Research Tips
City contracting personnel make daily business decisions about contract risks, insurance types, limits, coverage, and evaluation of certificates of insurance. Having the appropriate tools and resources to assist in making these business decisions is very important. City Risk designs, develops and updates several tools to assist City Bureau procurement personnel in making business decisions related to the management of risk in their agency’s contracting. Also, when the Consultants in City Risk are called upon to assist city bureaus with these decisions, the following are the types of tools that we use to assist in our research.  
City Risk

Other Resources
There are many sources of information regarding insurance, risk assessment and risk management on the Internet. Just a few examples are:

  • The Society of Chartered Property Casualty Underwriters
  • The International Risk Management Institute - One of the industry's most practical and reliable sources for risk management and insurance information. This Web site provides many informative articles and resources about insurance types, coverage analysis, market research, etc. 
  • Public Entity Risk Institute (PERI) - PERI provides resources and information to assist local governments with risk management related issues. Their Web site posts research papers, conference presentations and grant projects on many risk management subjects, including contract issues.  
  • - Construction risk management portal and library for risk management resources and information including articles, newsletters, the Report and a well organized arrangement of valuable Web sites. 

Tips for Insurance Related Internet Research
The Internet contains a vast amount of information. Use the following practice when searching for specifics on insurance and risk management issues:

  • Use a keyword for the type of information you are looking for, i.e., for example if you are researching professional liability insurance, type in "Professional Liability Insurance.” Numerous Web sites should be available to provide you with information on definitions of the coverage, sample policies, types of professionals that can obtain this insurance, and in some cases the availability of insurance for the professional in the State of Oregon.
  • Other tips:
    • Be aware of the origin of the Web site, i.e., samples of polices from Canada or the U.K., etc. are likely to be different from a similar type of policy in the United States.
    • If you utilize a Web site to ask an electronic question, take the advice with a grain of salt. For example, if you are visit an Insurance Broker’s Web site, there is a potential for their advice to be slanted towards the sales goals of the entity. Universities, Institutes, Professional Organizations, etc. are more reliable sources for you to ask questions about coverages that are talked about in their research.
    • If your potential contractor is a professional of some type, i.e., interpreter, engineer, physician, nurse, IT professional, etc. search the Internet for professional organizations related to that type of professional. Their Web sites frequently have information about the types of insurance the professional may carry, available limits, costs, etc. Many times, these organizations offer insurance coverage to their members at a substantial discount over the mainstream insurance market.