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Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) podcasts

Listen to the IFoA’s Sustainability podcast series here. In this series we explore the Sustainable Development Goals and the role that actuaries can play in achieving the 2030 agenda.

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are the blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all. They were set in 2015 by the United Nations General Assembly and intended to be achieved by the year 2030. They address the global challenges we face, including those related to poverty, inequality, climate change, environmental degradation, peace and justice. 

The aim of the podcast series is to highlight the relevance of the SDG’s to actuarial work, demonstrate where actuaries can contribute to achieving the SDG’s and showcase real life examples of people centring their work on the SDG’s across a range of actuarial practice areas.

Episode 1 - How can actuaries contribute to achieving the SDG's?

In this episode, Sustainability board member, Lucy Saye speaks to Dr Beate Degen and Past President Marjorie Ngwenya to discuss how the SDG’s interact with actuarial practice and the roles actuaries can play in achieving the SDG’s.

Intro & Production: Lucy Saye

Host: Lucy Saye

Guests: Marjorie Ngwenya & Beate Degen

Episode 2 - Biodiversity

In this episode, Chair of the Sustainability Board Nick Spencer speaks to Aled Jones (Global Sustainability Institute, Anglia Ruskin) and Gillian Rutherford (Swiss Re) to discuss the impact of biodiversity on the insurance and finance industries.

Introduction: Melissa Leitner

Host:  Nick Spencer

Guests: Gillian Rutherford & Aled Jones

Episode 3 - Decent Work and Economic Growth

In this episode, Sustainability Board member Lucy Saye speaks to Lisa Morgan from the International Labour Organisation (ILO) about SDG 8 decent work and economic growth and her work in the impact insurance team at the ILO.

Intro, Production & Host: Lucy Saye

Guest: Lisa Morgan

For more information about topics discussed in this episode please see the links below:

Episode 4 - Mental Health

In this episode, Melissa Leitner (Swiss Re, and Sustainability board volunteer) speaks to Sumit Misra (Bupa) and Kenneth McIvor (Willis Towers Watson) about how mental health is reflected in the SDGs, what the insurance industry is doing to better support people with mental health challenges, and the IFoA working party advancing this important work.

Intro & Production: Melissa Leitner

Host: Melissa Leitner

Guests: Sumit Misra & Kenneth McIvor

Episode 5 - Universal Ownership

In this episode Sustainability board member Lucy Saye speaks to Dr Ellen Quigley from the Centre for the Study of Existential Risk at Cambridge University on the topic of Universal Ownership. We explore the relevance of Universal Ownership to actuarial practice and the achievement of the SDG’s, covering topics such as climate change, inequality, the Covid 19 pandemic and actions Universal Owners such as pension funds and Life insurers can take to mitigate systemic risks.

More information about Universal Ownership can be found in the following papers: 

Episode 6 - Disaster Protection

This episode focuses on Disaster Protection with Daniel Clarke from the Centre for Disaster Protection (CDP). Shyam Gharial explores how Daniel’s work is linked to many of the SDGs, including climate change, inequality, decent work, partnership for goals, and how an actuarial skillset can be utilised in this area of work.

Daniel’s work aims to improve efficiencies in disaster risk financing. The CDP’s role in the Crisis Lookout Coalition is highlighted in their call for G7 leaders to better predict and prepare for crises, as well as to better protect people.This is a hugely topical theme given the Covid-19 pandemic and climate crisis.


Episode 7 - Sustainable development and the well-being of future generations

In this episode of the SDG podcast series, Sustainability Board member, Shyam Gharial speaks to Jane Davidson, a former Welsh Assembly member in government between 1999 and 2011. As Minister for the Environment, Sustainability & Housing, Jane proposed legislation to make sustainable development the central organising principle for the government in Wales through what became known as the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act, which passed into law in 2015. Many other nations have been looking at how to implement similar legislation, including for the UK.  The discussion touches on topics of intergenerational fairness, intragenerational fairness and the role that financial services can play in moving towards a more sustainable society.

Host: Shyam Gharial

Guests: Jane Davidson

The links mentioned in this episode for further information are as follows:



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Events calendar

  • CILA 2022

    23 May 2022 - 24 May 2022

    Spaces available

    We continue to live in a world of global uncertainty. Survival depends on our ability to simultaneously navigate through the diverse root-causes, ranging from: the consequences of Climate Change; transitioning to Net Zero; increased inflationary pressures and supply chain issues; to self-imposed changes in regulatory requirements. CILA 2022 focuses on these challenges to ensure we continue to be informed and remain battle ready, as well as showcasing highlights of recent CMI outputs.

  • Spaces available

    In the spirit of fostering the IFoA’s vibrant, global community and enabling our members to participate, we have decided to hold our AGM virtually again this year. This allows for greater accessibility to this important annual event, and for greater accountability of our organisation.

    The Business of the AGM

  • The IFoA Conference 2022

    133 Houndsditch, London EC3A 7BX and Online
    22 June 2022 - 23 June 2022
    Spaces available

    We’re delighted to welcome you back to our first in-person conference since early 2020, also being delivered virtually in our first-ever hybrid event. The theme of our inaugural two-day conference is ‘Focusing on tomorrow’s actuary’ and will explore the contribution actuarial science is making to some of tomorrow’s biggest issues.


  • Spaces available

    This webinar will cover:

    • Some background on the risks of misselling in an ESG context, including the DWS case

    • Achieving positive impact is a strong antidote to the risks of greenwashing or ESG misselling, however this risks having a tension with fiduciary responsibilities

    • This tension can be resolved with a concept called Universal Ownership

    • Under Universal ownership, investors have an appetite to make a loss in order to achieve positive impact, and yet still have no compromise on their fiduciary responsibilities

  • Spaces available

    This session will focus on the transformation roadmap of the healthcare sector in KSA and the role of actuarial capabilities in enhancing its evolution to the desired end stage as per the objectives of the Vision 2030. The discussion will focus how the system has evolved so far and shed light on  the expected future changes. Through examining  the transformation, we will highlight how the sector is and can use actuarial  expertise to not only assist with this transformation but also use basic actuarial principles to identify the key risks and their respective mitigation strategies.