August 2, 2013 | version française

Actuarial Training Modules for Microinsurance Businesses in Developing Countries

The IAA Microinsurance Working Group has developed a suite of Actuarial Training Modules for microinsurance aimed at helping businesses providing microinsurance in the developing world.

The Actuarial Modules are a suite of models designed to aid the education of microinsurance practitioners in running their businesses on sound actuarial principles. The models are spreadsheet based, containing a clear process for setting premium rates, calculating reserves and risk financing requirements. By improving access to training in this way the modules aim to help the poorest people in developing countries to be able to access insurance products that benefit them via companies that utilize sound business principles.

The first two modules which cover agricultural crop insurance and credit life insurance were launched late in 2012. A third module covering health insurance is planned for 2013.

The development of the modules was led by the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries, a Full Member Association of the IAA, in collaboration with the International Actuarial Association, the Microinsurance Network and the Oxford University Department of Statistics, following the identification of a need for microinsurance practitioners in low income countries to have training in robust actuarial principles. As there are few, if any, actuaries in many of these countries, the modular approach was viewed as the most practical first step in improving the way that businesses in this area were run. The modules are publicly available and provide clear guidance on the key actuarial processes of pricing, reserving and risk finance. They will be continuously updated in order that they remain fit for purpose and further modules will be developed based on demand.

Dermot Grenham, member of the IAA Microinsurance Working Group, said: “We hope that these modules will help to improve the quality of actuarial and general financial management of Micro-insurance providers in developing countries, especially where there is a lack of formal actuarial education. This is a really exciting project that has enabled a wide range of actuaries from across the globe to work together for the public good, work which will be of particular benefit to low income people in developing countries.”

The IAA Microinsurance Working Group was set up to serve as the IAA body that coordinates the microinsurance efforts of the various IAA Committees and Sections and provides a focal point for IAA efforts to help facilitate the development of microinsurance and actuarial involvement in this rapidly growing, and socially meaningful area.

To learn more about the work of the IAA on this topic, contact the IAA Secretariat, care of the Chairperson of the Working Group.