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The Actuary The magazine of the Institute & Faculty of Actuaries

Morris Review

By the time you read this, the deadline for submissions to the Morris Review will have passed and, in all probability, the submissions of other commentators will have been made available at the Morris website.

The only external reporting of our views so far has been an item in the Daily Telegraph reporting that the Faculty and Institute have merged!

The June consultation document was the first of three stages in the Morris Review before Sir Derek publishes his final report next year. In the autumn, Sir Derek envisages publishing an interim assessment paper, followed in the winter by a re-consultation period to test emerging options and develop recommendations. The first stage invited comments and information in relation to a specific set of (88) questions.

The press release issued by the profession (available in full on the website) majored on the fact that, in any post-Morris era, actuaries are ‘willing to compete if others are authorised to carry out the work’. At the same time, however, Harvie Brown and Michael Pomery insisted not only that regulators will need to know that the work is being carried out by somebody suitable – but that everyone authorised to perform those tasks was controlled by recognised bodies. These would in turn need to set appropriate qualifications and standards for all those prospective alternative practitioners.

The release also highlighted the five key measures the profession has already moved to put in place that are designed to restore public confidence in the profession. As most readers will already know, these are: the Actuarial Standards Board; the revalidation of professional competence; peer review; the new disciplinary scheme; and the new education syllabus. As Harvie and Michael put it: ‘Our initial response to the Morris Review was that we are confident in our new proposals. At the same time we remain open to new ideas that others might propose.’

The Morris Review inevitably causes us to reappraise and test our own strategy. As with any strategic review, it is important to take into account the views of stakeholders and the needs of customers and clients. We shall, of course, be doing that. We intend to hold regional consultation meetings early in 2005.