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Institute and Faculty of Actuaries launches consultation on SDGs

Industry body seeks to harness its expertise to support the 17 goals

The global body for actuaries has today launched a Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) initiative, seeking to harness its members’ expertise to promote the 17 UN goals.
The Institute and Faculty of Actuaries (IFoA) is calling on its membership to participate in an “open and global discussion” on the issue, via a consultation that it expects to use as the basis for a new “framework”. The framework will offer guidance to the profession on what it can do to help realise the SDGs, which include targets for equality, poverty and climate change, among others.
President of the IFoA, Marjorie Ngwenya, said: “We are asking our members, stakeholders and actuaries from all over the world to tell us how actuaries are relevant to the SDGs and how they can contribute to the goals being met.”
“Actuaries are experts in providing answers to complex questions around long-term global risk,” she added. “We hope submissions will help to shape ideas and provide structure on how to channel that expertise. The aim is to contribute towards solutions which eradicate poverty and hunger, tackle climate change and ensure access to education and work for all.”
The SDGs were adopted by the UN General Assembly in 2015. The goals, which form part of the UN’s 2030 Agenda, aim to eliminate all forms of poverty in all countries by 2030.
The deadline for submissions to the consultation is 23 March 2018. Following this, the IFoA will select a range of proposals to be developed further.Last year saw the IFoA significantly ramp-up its efforts to raise awareness of environmental, social and governance issues amongst its members and the wider investment community, including ambitions to “take a leading role” on issues around climate change risks.
In September, the body made its commitment to ESG official by becoming a Network Supporter of the Principles for Responsible Investment.
Speaking to RI at the time, Claire Jones, Chair of the IFoA’s ESG Working Party, said that the IFoA’s decision to be become a PRI Network Supporter was a continuation of the “mainstreaming of responsible investment” and the “latest stage in the IFoA’s long-evolving interest in topics related to responsible investing”.
She added, “we felt that the IFoA was already supportive of responsible investment and fulfilling most of the criteria for becoming a network supporter, so we wanted to formalise and publicise that commitment”.
The IFoA’s decision to become a Network Supporter followed its decision in May 2017 to send its first climate-change ‘risk alert’ to its members.
The alert – a mechanism the IFoA uses to offer ‘non-mandatory guidance’ to members – drew attention to the “material risk” that climate change poses, stressing its members’ responsibility to “consider how climate-related risks affect the advice they are providing”.