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Behavioural Aspects of Institutional Investment Decision-Making

The Institute and Faculty of Actuaries (IFoA), through its Actuarial Research Centre, is inviting research teams and organisations to submit proposals for a research project on behavioural finance.


Opening date 20 February 2017
Closing date 21 April 2017 (17.00 UK time, BST)
Expected award Mid May 2017
Expected commencement June 2017 onwards

Call description

The objective of this Call for Research is to explore the decision-making of institutional investors, in particular insurers and pension schemes, especially the biases that may affect their investment decisions. This could include, but not be limited to, emotional, psychological and political biases. It is expected that the project will first explore what "rational" or “optimal” behaviour could be expected from an institution in certain economic scenarios, based on its investment objectives and underlying values.

It will then explore whether there is solid evidence that “behavioural” factors, such as human psychology, company culture, corporate politics and conflicts of interest, cause them to deviate from optimal behaviour. The research should then make practical conclusions that could be used by actuaries working in investment and related areas. For example, one possible output of the research could be a suggested governance structure an organisation could put in place to manage these biases and conflicts. The IFoA is seeking research that has impact and practical application.

The IFoA has allocated funding of up to £200,000 to this proposal.  This grant may be split across more than one research team depending on the scope and content submitted by respondents.


Proposals would be welcomed from any research-led organisations within the university, not-for-profit, public or private sector.  Organisations may be based in the UK or elsewhere in the world.  We are particularly encouraging submissions from multi-disciplinary teams, which may span more than one organisation.

Call document

Download the Call for Research on Behavioural Aspects of Institutional Investment Decision-Making.  This document includes essential information for applicants, including how to apply.

Contact Details

For more information about the calls for research please contact the Research and Knowledge Team.

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