April 2012

Education and Research Section Council Synopsis of Recent Activity

By Kristen Moore

The purpose of the E&R section is to facilitate expanding the knowledge base of the actuarial profession, promote ties between business actuaries, academic actuaries and actuarial educators, and seek ways to support and encourage actuarial education and research.

The following is a brief update on the recent activities of the Education and Research (E&R) Section Council.

Thanks and Welcome

  • Three of our council members’ terms ended. We thank Joan Barrett, Sarah Christiansen, and Gary Parker for their service.
  • We welcome our newly elected council members: Sam Cox (University of Manitoba), Pat Pruitt (U.S. Railroad and Retirement Board), and Jim Trimble (University of Connecticut).
  • Ron Gebhardtsbauer’s term as E&R Section chair ended. We thank him for his leadership and service, and we welcome our new chair, Tom Edwalds.

Meeting Updates

  • Our section sponsored three events at the SOA Annual Meeting held in October 2011:
    • A panel discussion called “Systemic Risk: What Lies Ahead”
    • A panel discussion called “Applications of Econometric and Bayesian Methods”
    • A breakfast session for networking and general discussion of section activities
  • Our section sponsored three sessions at the 2011 Health meeting
    • "Avoiding Statistical Pitfalls in Actuarial Work"
    • "Credibility and Health Benefits"
    • And a breakfast session
  • We plan to have a breakfast session and to co-sponsor two other sessions at the 2012 Health Meeting.
  • We plan to sponsor two sessions at the 2012 Annual Meeting.

Actuarial Research Conference (ARC)

The 2012 and 2013 ARC will be held at University of Manitoba and Temple University, respectively. See the article in this edition of Expanding Horizons for more details about the 2012 ARC.

We are accepting applications for ARC in 2014 and beyond; applications are due May 31, 2012. Please see /professional-interests/education-and-research/eandr-sol-arc.aspx for the full solicitation.


We have been discussing ways to reach out to our membership and beyond. For example:

  • There has been some lively discussion in our new LinkedIn Group, which has about 100 members. Please see the article in this edition of Expanding Horizons for more details about the new LinkedIn group.
  • We have discussed ways of reaching out to non-actuaries who teach actuaries.
  • We are discussing possible webinar topics for our section. In particular, we are planning a statistics review webinar for August.

We value your feedback and ideas on section activities. If you would like to share a comment or suggestion with us, please contact Tom Edwalds at tedwalds@munichre.com.

Kristen S. Moore, PhD, ASA, is an associate professor in the Department of Mathematics at University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Mich. She can be reached at ksmoore@umich.edu or http://www.math.lsa.umich.edu/~ksmoore/.