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The Actuary The magazine of the Institute & Faculty of Actuaries

Leicester event aims to build actuary-academia links

The University of Leicester has held an event aimed at developing stronger links between the financial and actuarial sectors and academia.


Involving presentations by practitioners from industry and academics, the university’s first workshop on actuarial mathematics showed that both communities have particular skills and strengths which it would be mutually beneficial to share.

Professor Jeremy Levesley, head of mathematics at the University of Leicester, said the institution was ‘very keen’ to make sure it could help solve problems that colleagues in the business and industrial world are facing.

‘At the same time we would like our students and ourselves to better appreciate the world of work, so that we may be able to work together more effectively for our mutual benefit,’ he added.

‘One such way is for us to share advanced mathematical techniques with a wider audience, but we are very open to other sorts of collaboration.’

Among those giving presentations at the event were Andrew Smith and Alexander Graeme from Deloitte, who spoke about ultimate forward rates in theory and practice, while Chris Hursey from Charasys spoke about replicating formulae.

Martyn Dorey, of CAMRADATA Analytical Services, gave a presentation on the geometry of finance and Marco de Innocentis of Risk Care spoke about pricing discrete barrier options and credit default swaps under Lévy models.

From academia, the University of Leicester’s Professor Sergei Levendorskiy spoke about the efficient pricing of contingent claims and his colleague at the university, Professor Alexander Gorban, gave a presentation on data visualisation and cartography.

Louise Pek Law Heong, of the Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman in Malaysia, gave a presentation on portfolio optimisation using Mahalanobis squared divergence.

The University of Leicester said the success of the event meant it now aimed to make the workshops regular events, with the next scheduled to coincide with the annual Actuarial Teachers’ and Researchers’ Conference it is hosting in September.

As well as its’ ‘very active mathematics research group, the university also offers a PgDip/Msc in Actuarial Science via distance learning. More information on this is available by e-mailing actsciadmin@le.ac.uk.

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