An Introduction to the IAA
Cecil Bykerk, President
October 2011, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Origins, mission and recognition
• Founded in 1895
• Restructured in 1998 to serve as worldwide
association of professional actuarial associations.
• To encourage development of global profession
• technically competent and professionally reliable
• to ensure that the public interest is served
• Not-for-profit, non-political, Non-Governmental
• on the Roster of the Economic and Social Council of the UN
• on the Special List of the ILO
Membership and representation
• Full Member Associations: 63
• Associate Member Associations: 26
• Assisting development of profession in 30
additional countries
• Fully qualified actuaries: 60,000+ in more than
100 countries
Membership and representation
• Institutional Members:
International Association of Insurance Supervisors (IAIS)
International Accounting Standards Board (IASB)
International Social Security Association (ISSA)
International Organization of Pension Supervisors (IOPS)
Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development
• Observer Member:
– Asian Development Bank (ADB)
IAA Membership Requirements
• For Full Member Association
– Code of Conduct
– Formal discipline process
– IAA Education Guidelines and Syllabus
– Formal process to adopt standards of practice, if and
when national standards are created
• For Associate Member Association
– Actuarial association not meeting all conditions above
Relationship between IAA, Sections
and Congresses
• IAA: association driven, focusing on
professionalism, standards, representation
• Sections: scientific, research and practical arm
• Congresses: a high point for both
• Section Colloquia: yearly or biennially
• Congresses: every 4 years
• Next Congresses: March-April 2014 (Washington,
DC – USA) ; 2018 (Berlin, Germany)
Communication and Tools for Members
• Communication is electronic: List servers
• Quarterly Newsletters; Special Newsletter after
each meeting
• News releases to external audiences to inform of
important IAA initiatives
• Committee delegates and interested persons can
join various list servers to participate / monitor
work of committees
Communication and Tools for Members
• IAA Members’ Website contains:
– specialized online translation tool in 8 pairs of
– specialized search tool
– Actuarial E-Library, specialized topic libraries
– International Events Calendar
• Guidelines to facilitate participation of non-native
English speakers and new delegates in work of IAA
Potentially Difficult Issues
Potentially difficult issues
for a small Association
Discipline cases
Standards of Practice
Promotion / marketing / engagement of relevant
• Member engagement
• Resources
Governance: leadership, strategic
direction, decision-making
• Issues
Leader burnout
Few members willing and able to take on leadership
Decisions seen as having commercial implications
Decisions taken very personally
Education – Basic and Continuing
• Issues
Basic education materials
o Current
o Locally relevant
Exam creation, administration, grading
Professionalism course administration
Continuing education materials
o Adequate scope
Education – Basic and Continuing
• Issues
– Basic education materials
• Current
• Locally relevant
– Exam creation, administration, grading
– Professionalism course administration
– Continuing education materials
• Adequate scope
Discipline cases
• Issues
Finding a discipline panel
o Experience
o Relevant expertise
o Clearly impartial (personal, commercial)
Cases are rare – new learning curve each time
Privacy of accused actuary
Standards of Practice
• Issues
Local actuarial market may not have sufficient
experience in key areas to define the standard of
Local practitioners may not have adequate experience
and perspective to draft the standards
Need a formal process for drafting and adopting SOPs
Promotion, marketing, and
engagement of other entities
• Issues
o No long track record
o Self-promotion
May require senior actuaries
Member engagement
• Issues
Early career actuaries not ready to volunteer their time
for the association
Lack of employer support
Association resources
• Issues
Not enough people to do all the work
Heavy burden on a few people
Dues income not sufficient to cover necessary
Inventing each program for the first time
Potential Resources
Leverage the IAA
• Samples and models of documents such as
• Local seminars
– IAA Fund Professionalism seminar
– IAA Fund Role of the Actuary seminar
• IAA Section webinars
• Advice & Assistance Committee – ask for help
Leverage mature associations
• Basic education
– Educational materials
– Examinations
– Credential
– Perhaps focus local effort on educating and testing
regarding local laws, regulations, products, business
• Standards (make local adjustments)
• Seminars, including webinars
Leverage the universities
• Experts in education
– Develop an appropriate credential path
– Also a good mechanism for attracting additional students to the
– May be able to bring in lecturers from around the world
– Association may still need to cover some topics
• Perhaps combine with internships at local insurance
companies and consulting firms
Regulatory support
• Very helpful to have the regulator supporting the
role of the actuary
– Informally
– Formally (laws and regulations)
• We have found it very useful to have local
regulators attend Role of the Actuary seminars
Regulatory support
• Very helpful to have the regulator supporting the
role of the actuary
– Informally
– Formally (laws and regulations)
• We have found it very useful to have local
regulators attend Role of the Actuary seminars
Seek an association mentor
• Find a mature association willing to partner
 Exam
materials and administration
 Credentials
 Professionalism education
 Continuing education (seminars)
 Ongoing advice
Seek some individual actuary mentors
from mature associations
• Mentor to your association
 Provide
ongoing advice and counsel
 Help connect to other resources worldwide
 Serve as a discipline panel when needed
• Mentor to your members
 Possibly
connect your individual members with
mentors around the world
Regional partnerships
• Pool your resources with other associations in the
Final thoughts
• Even with a wide variety of resources, must have a
core group of passionate leaders
• Pursue ambitious but realistic goals
• Begin involving the next generation of leaders
International Actuarial Association
Secretariat: Ottawa

IAA Overview for SOA Board