Explore the Prism of Challenges for the Modern Actuary.

It’s not enough to just study and know the books. A well-rounded actuary has to keep up to date with the current trends and challenges faced by the respective industries. From Brexit to the Trump presidency, from Climate Change and Big Data to Blockchain and FinTech-related trends. Are we able to keep up with the economic changes and technology revolution?

Here is the chance for us to explore and adapt the changes in different industries. Take the initiative.


Doors open

Opening remarks

Talk: Digital Forensic on Cybersecurity

With the increase of digitalization and global integration, cyber risk has been a major threat to the insurance business. Thus, corporations are creating cyber security culture to tackling risk. Mr. Basil Manoussos will highlight the use of digital forensics to evaluate previous breaches or cyber attacks in view of future risk assessment.

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Talk: Insurance on Earthquake Catastrophe Risk

Earthquake has always been a major social and economic threat to the insurance and re-insurance industry. Dr. Gordon Woo will introduce quantitative earthquake risk modelling and elaborate on the evolution of earthquake insurance analysis, engaging one of the largest historical earthquake events – Tohoku Earthquake Japan.

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An opportunity to network, with refreshments.

Talk: The Rise of InsurTech

Insurers are starting to recognize the importance of most FinTech and InsurTech-related trends, as a result, is working to bridge the gap using data analytics and economic modeling to deliver benefits at each stage of customer life cycle. Mr. Barry Smart will emphasize the use of InsurTech in improving insurance while innovating for commercial gains.

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Closing Remarks

Final words from the President of SAS and awarding BQA cash prizes.

Conference ends


Dr. Gordon Woo

Dr. Gordon Woo is a catastrophist with Risk Management Solutions, specializing in the mathematical modelling of extreme insurance risks. He is the author of the books, 'The Mathematics of Natural Catastrophes' and 'Calculating Catastrophe'. Top mathematics graduate of Cambridge University, he completed his PhD at MIT as a Kennedy Scholar, and was a member of the Harvard Society of Fellows. He is a visiting professor at UCL, and an adjunct professor at NTU, Singapore.

Vassilis K. (Basil) Manoussos

Vassilis Manoussos is a digital forensics consultant, owner of Strathclyde Forensics and currently the Manager of The Cyber Academy at Edinburgh Napier University. He has diverse business experience in the UK and Greece, and has worked with organisations like IBM, Abbey National and HM Government.

Since 2009, he has been running his own business, Strathclyde Forensics, providing Expert Witness and Digital Forensics services, to businesses and individuals, but mainly to the legal profession. He has been involved in several high profile cases and has been training solicitors and other legal professionals in Digital Evidence, Cybercrime and Cybersecurity. He has also provided training to the Chinese Government, including the Ministry of Industry and IT, and the South-to-North Water Diversion Project (one of the largest infrastructure projects on the planet).

He is currently providing training to the Scottish Government on Incident Response, as a part of the Edinburgh Napier/Cyber Academy team. Vassilis has been invited to speak to Cybersecurity conferences and events in the UK and abroad (Romania, Italy) and he has been involved in Edinburgh Napier University’s events like the Post Graduate Cyber Security (PGCS) Symposium (2016) and as a speaker at the Symposium on Data Loss Detection and Prevention (2015).

Vassilis is currently working through The Cyber Academy with the Law Society of Scotland, and various Scottish/UK government agencies in an advisory and training capacity.

Barry Smart

Barry is Chief Technology Officer and a Partner at Hymans Robertson LLP, We are the UK's largest independent firm of consulting actuaries providing pensions, investment, benefits and risk consulting services. In doing so, we work predominantly with the Trustees of pensions schemes, employers and financial institutions. Since joining in 2012, Barry has played a leading role in enabling the 96 year old firm to embrace the opportunities created as the financial services industry undergoes unprecedented change, fuelled in part by the digital revolution.

As a result, the firm is turning increasingly to the data, API and App economies to supplement its traditional consulting business, by leveraging its strong heritage and intellectual property to take new digital propositions to market that embody our belief that 'everyone has a right to a better future, and it should not be left to chance'. To do this, Barry has been required to take on a multi-faceted role as strategist, chief architect, business consultant and software engineer.

His 'renaissance man' tendencies extend outside of work where he enjoys combining his passions for mountain biking, photography, Minecraft (with the kids!) and playing trombone in a big band, but not all at once!