Institute and Faculty of Actuaries
Public Affairs Brief
14 November 2016
Welcome from Paul Reynolds, Director of Public Affairs

In 2011, the IFoA five-year strategy set out our commitment to inform and influence existing public policy development with contributions based on evidence and expertise. Since then, the IFoA’s Policy and Public Affairs team has been working hard to promote actuaries and their work to the outside world, engaging with policymakers from government, in parliament and across the regulatory landscape.

This month we are delighted to launch the new Public Affairs Brief, a newsletter designed to keep you informed of the work of my team, and all the interesting and exciting work they are doing to promote the profession, across all practice areas, by working with our members to provide rigorous, independent analysis using actuarial science.

Below you’ll find details of our new Key Policy Priorities, the issues we use to shape our policy thinking, plus links to our previous work, interesting news (both from us and from the wider world) as well as some information on how we have engaged in a recent major policy debates.

I hope you enjoy reading and engaging with the work of our team. If you have any questions about anything you see below, ideas for future policy work or suggestions for how we could improve, please do get in touch using

Policy Priorities
Our Key Policy Priorities - Refreshed

In 2014, the Policy and Public Affairs team and IFoA Practice Boards identified our Key Policy Priorities: four key areas where public policy development was needed and where actuaries and their work could add significant value in informing government, regulators and policymakers.


The team set out to inform the debate through the use of rigorous, independent research and analysis using actuarial science. Working alongside the membership, we have established the actuarial profession as a trusted voice in these key policy areas.


Earlier this year, we refreshed our Key Policy Priorities to bring them up to date and in line with the most significant public policy challenges of the modern day.  These key priorities, Ageing population, Evolving risks and the future of insurance, Investing for sustainable growth and Resource and environment span the new and traditional actuarial practice areas and will shape the IFoA’s policy work and external engagement over the coming 18 months.

Ageing Population
Evolving Rissks and the Future of Insurance
Resource and Environment
Investing for Sustainable Growth
Our Brexit Priorities – 2400 responses to the IFoA Brexit survey!

You don’t need to be a political pundit to recognise that the outcome of the EU Referendum has fundamentally reshaped the nature of British politics, both in the immediate and long term.


As members may be aware, on the 11 July the IFoA launched a member survey to gauge the key concerns, opportunities and priorities of the IFoA membership after the referendum. While primarily targeted at UK and EU members of the IFoA, given the potential global impact of the withdrawal negotiations the survey was open to all members.


Visit our website to see the results of this survey and read our analysis of the potential issues that may impact members as well as the next steps and the key Brexit priorities for the IFoA over the next couple of years.

Read more >
Our engagement
Meeting with Pensions Minister

The highlight of our recent stakeholder engagement has been our meeting with the Pensions Minister, Richard Harrington. The IFoA’s Immediate Past President Fiona Morrison, accompanied by the Policy team, met the minister in September for a wide ranging discussion of both DB and DC pensions issues.


The discussion covered auto-enrolment, the Lifetime ISA and issues around ensuring an adequate retirement for savers, and moved on to broad conversation on the sustainability and regulation of DB schemes. We were able to share some insights from our response to the Work and Pensions Select Committee inquiry into the Pension Protection Fund and Pensions Regulator and informed the minister of our upcoming policy output on the sustainability of DB schemes, planned for early 2017.


The Minister was keen that we to continue to engage with him and his officials and we have since been invited to provide technical advice on an upcoming piece of pensions legislation on pensions early exit charges.

Policy Highlights

During the lead up to the EU Referendum, we commissioned research from the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) to look at the potential effects of migration on the State Pension system. The paper published in June was covered in double page spreads in The Times and The Daily Mail, as well as being covered in The Mirror, City AM and The Herald Scotland.

Download the paper >

Launched in July, this policy paper examines existing approaces to assessing retirement income adequacy, and suggests that a bottom-up approach, based on retirement income goals, could be an effective alternative. Since its launch, this paper has seen us approached by the House of Commons Library which has now made copies of all of the IFoA’s policy briefings available to MPs.

Download the paper >

The IFoA on an International Stage


The IFoA is a large member association of both the Actuarial Association of Europe (AAE), and of the International Actuarial Association (IAA).


The predominant objectives of both organisations are to help recognise the actuarial profession as a major player in decision making, and to be a professional and leading advisor on matters of actuarial relevance – in Europe and globally, respectively.


Both international organisations play an important part in the advancement of the vision and mission of the IFoA. We are a global organisation, with a UK heritage. With a growing 60% of our students based outside the UK, and an increasing number of non-UK qualified members, we want to serve all our members wherever they are based. The IAA and AAE both help us to build relations internationally, and help us promote the actuarial profession.


Many of our volunteers are involved in representing the IFoA at these supra-national institutions. For example, the AAE held its Annual Meeting recently in Barcelona, where some nine IFoA representatives participated in committee meetings to discuss issues around pensions, insurance, education and professional standards. The coordination of IFoA representation lies with the IFoA’s International Board, chaired by Charles Cowling.


Next, the IFoA will send a delegation of volunteers and from its Executive to the IAA Council and Committee meeting in November. There, we will contribute to the many debates regarding the actuarial profession, and further widen and deepen our relationships with the many other actuarial professional bodies around the world.


If you’re interested in getting involved with the IFoA’s international efforts, please visit our website to learn more.

Word on the street

The IFoA's Public Affairs team keeps its ear to the ground, constantly scanning the external environment for governmental, parliamentary, regulatory and industry developments that could affect or interest actuaries and the IFoA. Some highlights from this month include:


Consultations roundup
Speaking up on behalf of the profession

The IFoA regularly engages with government, regulators and parliamentary committees by responding to consultations on relevant topics where actuarial analysis can have a valuable input to the public debate.


Some highlights from the IFoA's  recent submissions include:


As you may be aware, the UK Treasury Select Committee has opened an inquiry into the introduction and operation of Solvency II, in the light of June’s Brexit vote. The inquiry aims to understand the strengths and weaknesses of Solvency II in its existing form, together with exploring the options open to the UK insurance industry following the Brexit vote.


We have worked with volunteers from both Life and GI practice areas to craft a detailed response, helping to promote the importance of the actuarial voice in this impending policy debate. For more information on this repsonse please get in touch at

Read more >
In the News
The latest news from Policy and Public Affairs

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