Here's a preview of some of the many sessions that attendees can look forward to. Don't miss out – book your ticket by 5 June.
Following the success of last year’s IFoA Conference, we are delighted to be back on 26–27 June in London, both in-person and online. We have two days, 35 workshops and five plenaries lined up, all designed to help you develop your knowledge, build your network and meet your ambitions. Here’s a taster of what to expect.
- Navigating the permacrisis: the actuarial profession’s role in weathering the storm
This panel will bring together experts from different fields to give their views on the threats facing society and how the profession is tackling them. How can actuaries step up and steer their organisations through choppy waters? What threats and opportunities do we face in doing so? Is it all doom and gloom, or is there light at the end of the tunnel?
Speakers: Greg Thwaites, research director at the Resolution Foundation; Baroness Camilla Cavendish, former head of the No 10 Policy Unit
- Life after Covid: how will it impact our work and the skills we need?
What skills did actuaries use to make a difference during the pandemic? What was the pandemic’s impact on NHS waiting lists, and the knock-on effect for health and insurance? This session will cover these questions, as well as focusing on how our work during Covid can be built on for the future – for instance, working with other professions, and learning what methods of communication were most effective.
Speaker: Stuart McDonald MBE
- Delivering the IFoA diversity, equity and inclusion strategy: making our profession diverse, equitable and inclusive for everyone
This plenary will bring together experts from across the industry to give updates on initiatives spanning the diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) agenda, from encouraging social mobility across financial services to improving understanding of access and inclusion requirements for disabled and vulnerable consumers. It will also provide updates on the IFoA’s progress on implementing our DEI strategy.
Speakers: Peter Hamilton, government disability and access ambassador for the insurance sector; Maz Bown, Aviva; Vincent Keaveny, Progress Together; Stephen Mann, CEO of the IFoA
- Pensions adequacy: a ticking timebomb or ‘keep calm and carry on’?
One longstanding priority for the IFoA and its members is helping savers to ensure they can retire in comfort, with an adequate pension. Automatic enrolment has brought millions of people into pension saving, but are policymakers resting on their laurels and becoming complacent about its impact on savings levels? Will today’s savers have enough for retirement? What more can be done to support higher levels of saving and pensions engagement?
Speakers: Chris Curry, director, Pensions Policy Institute and principal of the Pensions Dashboard Programme; Hetty Hughes, manager, long-term savings policy, ABI; Heidi Karjalainen, research economist, Institute for Fiscal Studies; Leah Evans, associate partner and head of pensions risk transfer, EY-Parthenon Pensions Team; Rt Hon Sir Stephen Timms MP, Chair – Work and Pensions Select Committee
- Workshop A5: How do we pool risk in the future? Is there a fair solution to this problem? (Health and care)
Actuaries have been at the forefront of risk pooling since its inception. Approaches and pricing have changed over time, but the general concepts are the same. With additional use of data and an increasing number of rating factors, pools are shrinking. This session will consider questions such as: what is ‘fair’? What is the right balance between fairness to all customers and society, and how do we decide this? Do we, and should we, have a say in it? Could we end up at the ‘insurance of one’, by which time we have erased the concept of risk pooling?
Speakers: Nick Reilly, Matthew Edwards and Duncan Minty
- Workshop B2: Capital-backed funding arrangements – the risks and opportunities of external capital for defined benefit schemes (Pensions)
Recent improvements in defined benefit funding levels have brought forward the target dates of many schemes’ journey plans, yet the target end state may still be several years off. External capital could enable a more defined path and/or short time to reach the long-term objective, but this is a new investment area and there are a variety of approaches in the market. This interactive session will introduce this developing market and consider how to assess the risks and opportunities of various approaches.
Speakers: Derek Steeden, Invesco; Adolfo Aponte, Cardano; Ben Stone, Mercer; Jonathan Repp, EY
- Workshop B4: Seeking opportunities from the new Consumer Duty (Life)
The requirements of the Financial Conduct Authority’s new Consumer Duty are far reaching. This talk will look at a broad set of examples from different markets. The Duty sets a higher benchmark under which actuaries must operate, so we will consider ways to gain maximum value from the guidance by seeking out opportunities to provide better outcomes for customers.
Speakers: Karen Brolly, Siobhan Lough, Dharshini Navaratnam and Natanya Taylor, Hymans Robertson
- Workshop C7: Building your personal strength (Multi-disciplinary)
This workshop will provide a toolkit for building resilience and agility through communications, leadership, mindfulness and engaging your own personal strengths to your team’s benefit. Volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity are all unsettling aspects of change and we all respond to them differently.
Speaker: Sharon Constançon, Genius Boards
- Workshop D6: Earth Jenga – can actuaries learn to play by new rules? (Sustainability)
This workshop will introduce the concept of Earth Jenga – a game of Jenga in which we change the rules by painting the blocks blue and green to represent our natural resources. As we extract them to put on top of the tower they become yellow, representing our extractive economy. The trick is to keep the tower stable while building the economy.
This talk covers how we do that, and looks at opportunities for actuaries as we move into the sustainability era.
Speaker: Sandy Trust, M&G plc
- Workshop E1: Liability-driven investment another day (Finance and investment/Risk management)
Liability-driven investment (LDI) has become more prominent than ever. Too frequently, the descriptions of risks and recent events overlook important details.
This session aims to explore:
- A brief history and benefits of LDI
- Funding-level developments, including sensitivity to hedge ratios
- Key leverage instruments
- Collateral ‘headroom’ and waterfalls as key collateral management tools
- Why different mandate types exist (pooled/segregated)
- Why pooled funds are widely accepted to have suffered most
- Upcoming considerations (including, for example, the Defined Benefit Funding Code)
- The desire for LDI moving forwards
- Additional collateral management options.
Speaker: Michael O’Connor, NatWest Markets
- Workshop E3: Embedding ad hoc inflation calculations into reserving going forward (General insurance)
The past 18 months have seen inflation rates increase across the world. Most insurers responded by developing models to quantify this uncertainty and adding loadings to reserves. Inflation is slowing and we expect it to fall significantly within the next year. What does that mean for models developed in 2022? Will they remain relevant or will insurers need to release these loadings? This session will reflect on how insurers reacted to increasing uncertainty and bring in recent inflation forecasts to look at how the approaches might hold up next year-end.
Speakers: Dorian Hicks and Lisa Quickfall, Mazars
- Workshop E7: How to futureproof your career (Multi-disciplinary)
In volatile times, with the world of work constantly changing, it is crucial to approach career management and development mindfully and deliberately. This session will focus on 10 pillars of successful career management. Packed with tips and applicable strategies, it aims to inform, inspire and kick you into action.
Speaker: Jelena Radonjic, WhatWork Career Coaching Limited
In the spirit of fostering the IFoA’s vibrant global community, the AGM and presidential address will be hybrid events this year. They will take place online and in person at etc.venues, Houndsditch, London as part of the IFoA Conference (26–27 June). The AGM is for members only and is free to attend, but you will need to book.
Those attending the IFoA Conference can confirm their attendance at the AGM and presidential address when booking for the conference. If you are not attending the conference, you can still attend the AGM by booking your place separately (members only).
This is just a selection of the sessions on offer. Find complete in-person and online schedules at actuaries.org.uk/ifoaconference23 Booking for the conference closes 5 June. Book your ticket today.
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