Maclaurin House library

Resources and services at Maclaurin House library

The Ross Library
Institute and Faculty of Actuaries
Maclaurin House
18 Dublin Street

Tel. + 44 (0)131 240 1311 Fax. + 44 (0)131 240 1313

Opening hours are 09.00 - 17.00 hrs Monday to Friday


What's in the Ross Library?

The Library has some 6000 volumes on actuarial and related topics (including insurance (life and non-life), reinsurance, pensions, employee benefits, social security, investment, corporate finance, health and care and risk management).  There are approximately 100 current journal and serial titles spanning all areas of actuarial practice, including sets of journals of actuarial bodies.  The two libraries of the Profession operate a joint service, so members using the Ross Library also have access to the collections of the Staple Inn (London) library.

Members are welcome to consult the online catalogue in the Ross Library.  Internet facilities are also accessible to library visitors.

Is there access to ACTED / examination material?

There is a full set of Core Reading and ACTED course material for reference purposes (it can't be borrowed and it can't be photocopied), together with reference sets of past examination papers, solutions, and examiners' comments.  The Library stocks the recommended reading. 

Members, and university students on actuarial related courses, are always welcome to visit the Library, which offers a quiet environment for study and research. It is open from 9.00 am to 5.00 pm, Monday to Friday. The Librarian is always happy to help with inquiries and research.

What's new in the Library?

New items, both purchased and donated, are added all the time. A monthly list of recent additions to both Libraries is available on our website, helping you to keep up to date with new developments in actuarial and related subjects.  If you would like to receive this in hard copy, please contact the Edinburgh Librarian.

Antiquarian collection

There is an antiquarian collection of some 1,600 titles, including John Napier's Rabdologiae and Logarithmorum canonis, together with a further 77 volumes containing valuable and fascinating pamphlets from insurance sources between the late eighteenth and early twentieth centuries.  A few years ago all of the pre-20th century collection was transferred to the care of Edinburgh University where it can be accessed through the library's Special Collections department (tel: +44 (0)131 650 3409, contact using form or contact the Edinburgh Librarian).  Catalogue records have been integrated with the University's catalogue to give worldwide access. 


The library is responsible for the early archives of both the Faculty of Actuaries and ASLO (Association of Scottish Life Offices). These include early Minute Books, Rolls of Students, Rolls of Fellows and account books.


A collection of photographs includes two albums of past presidents and one album of the centenary celebrations of 1956. A recent addition is a biographical file of prominent living actuaries, containing photographs, profiles and press cuttings. 

History of the Ross Library

The Library of the Faculty of Actuaries has been in existence almost since the founding of the Faculty in 1856. The core of it is housed on the first floor of the Institute and Faculty's premises at 18 Dublin Street, Edinburgh. In 1998 the library was re-named the Ross Library to commemorate John Muirhead Ross, President 1950-52, whose bequest funded the purchase of the library bookcases.