March 2018 Board of Directors Meeting

The Society of Actuaries (SOA) Board of Directors (Board) met March 19, 2018 in its regular first-quarter in-person meeting.

Adapting SOA Education to International Markets

The SOA Board reviewed and approved the recommendations of the Adapting SOA Education to International Markets Task Force to ensure the education the SOA provides in an international context is relevant to key stakeholders including candidates, members and employers.  The task force recommended new international education principles, which have been incorporated into updated Principles for SOA Prequalification Education, and specific tactics that will be reflected in the SOA’s prequalification education and continuing professional development offerings.

The updated principles and tactics:

  • Emphasize the importance of developing actuaries with a globally relevant education and perspective while affirming the need for actuaries to be able to practice in specific local jurisdictions.
  • Recommend adding more international content to both the ASA and FSA curriculums.
  • Affirm the use of English in the examination context, except where required by law and sufficient demand is measured.
  • Encourage the use of local languages for continued professional development offerings.

“Developing actuaries with a global perspective is central to the SOA strategy overall and essential to the SOA’s prequalification strategy,” said SOA President, Mike Lombardi, FSA, CERA, FCIA, MAAA. “The work of the task force has affirmed the SOA’s strong position in this regard and the recommendations will position the SOA to further improve our position as a global educator of actuaries.”

Decision Governance

The Board participated in a discussion with the Decision Governance Task Force to learn about processing and addressing high stakes decisions. For these “high stakes” discussions, the Board examined the importance of approaching these complex decisions effectively and not treating them as routine decisions.  The board explored discussion techniques and new processes to understand decisions from multiple perspectives, counter biases, and approach the issues using the generative discussion format, adopted by the Board in 2017, to allow for effective treatment of high stakes decisions and emerging issues. 

Leadership Team Appointment Process

The Board approved a process to recruit the Secretary/Treasurer and Member-At-Large. In October 2017, the Board approved a Bylaws change to the Leadership Team composition.

  • Previously, the Leadership Team consisted of the SOA President, President-Elect, Immediate Past President, Penultimate Past President, Secretary-Treasurer, and Executive Director.
  • Currently, the Leadership Team consists of those officers plus two Elected Board Members, one of whom is Secretary/Treasurer.
  • The 2018-2019 Leadership Team will consist of the SOA President, President-Elect, Immediate Past President and two Elected Board members, one of whom will be the Secretary/Treasurer.

These changes diversify the perspective among the Leadership Team which has the authority to carry out the business and functions of the SOA between meetings of the Board of Directors, except as otherwise set forth in the SOA Bylaws or the Illinois General Not For-Profit Corporation Act of 1986. The approved recruiting process includes a task force made up of the retiring past president and 2-3 board members whose role will be to bring a recommended slate to the Incoming President for approval.

InsurTech and the Actuarial Model

The Board provided input into findings collected by the InsurTech Task Force. The Task Force will present their near-term (present – 5 years) recommendations to the Board in June 2018.  The evolution of InsurTech, new technology disrupting the insurance space, is driven by the desire for a better consumer experience, and new InsurTech business models. 

Artificial Intelligence

The Board heard a presentation from Kyle Farh, MD, PhD, Director, Biometrics and Data Sciences, Illumina, Inc. Dr. Farh, by providing an overview of the human genome which can be ‘read’ by Artificial Intelligence (AI) but not by humans, demonstrated how combined with the growth of genomic data, AI will result in a rapid expansion of clinical insights from genome sequencing.  His discussion illustrated the power of AI to transform our understanding of risk.

If you have any questions or comments about the recent SOA Board meeting, please send a note to membercomms@soa.org.