Diversity, Equity & Inclusion: Strategy in Action in the CAS

In October 2020, the CAS adopted a Strategic Approach to Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, which is now going through an annual review process, to be revised at the beginning of 2022.

The 2020/2021 strategy included seven principles that guided CAS DE&I activities over the past year. The following table shows the 2020 strategic principles on the left, and examples of how we have put this into practice since the adoption of the strategy.

Strategic Principles The Strategy in Action
Center and amplify the viewpoints of underrepresented candidates and members – those who have been doing this work for years and know best how to address the issues of their constituencies.

 

CAS publications are amplifying the perspectives of community members from historically marginalized groups. Read A Tale of Two Actuaries: The Origin Story from the International Association of Black Actuaries and The Importance of Pronouns: A Non-Binary Actuarial Analyst’s Perspective in the Actuarial Review.

 

Break down the Barriers to Entry identified in the 2017/2018 SOA/CAS/IABA/TAF Research Study.

 

The CAS co-commissioned a study on barriers to entry to the actuarial profession for Black/African American and Hispanic/Latino candidates in 2017/2018. The Executive Summary and more information on this study can be found at https://www.casact.org/barriers-entry-study. CAS and SOA co-host Be An Actuary Day events throughout the year to expose underrepresented high school students to the profession, addressing one of the biggest barriers, lack of awareness of the actuarial profession.

 

Scrutinize and rebuild CAS systems to combat direct and indirect systemic bias, and ensure our work does no harm.

 

CAS members are examining the system of actuarial pricing as it intersects with issues of racial bias in the United States. Check out the CAS Approach to Race and Insurance Pricing page for more information, and join us at the Annual Meeting for a session covering two of the four research briefs currently in progress – Defining Discrimination and Quantifying Disparate Impact in Insurance.

 

Recognize that we do not exist in a vacuum and we cannot succeed unless we invest in the community at large, with particular focus on organizations that support racial justice in education.

 

The CAS recently partnered with the American Indian Science and Engineering Society to promote awareness of the actuarial profession in their Winds of Change Magazine. This magazine is read by indigenous students and professionals pursing STEM fields across the US and Canada. Find our 2-page Be An Actuary flyer in the Fall 2021 issue of Winds of Change!

 

Set concrete goals and maintain transparency and accountability around progress and failure.

 

CAS has set aspirational goals for to address underrepresentation of Women and Black, Latino and Indigenous members in the profession. Members can view these goals along with current CAS data and external benchmarks in our CAS Spotlight on Diversity 2020 Infographic Series.

 

Employ learnings from the above process to address issues facing members and candidates in other historically marginalized groups within and outside of North America.

 

CAS is currently exploring opportunities to support our international members and partners in DE&I efforts outside of the US. Coming up – CAS members are supporting DE&I and other continuing education offerings at the Caribbean Actuarial Association’s annual meeting December 6-10, 2021.

 

For 2021, the Board is considering adding a principle related to educating members on relevant DE&I Topics. Members can already find regular opportunities to build their DE&I skills on the CAS events calendar. Short on time? Access the first mini-training in our Foundations of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion series on Race, Gender and Meritocracy on the CAS Diversity, Equity and Inclusion page. Watch that space for our second mini-training on Equity vs Equality coming soon!

Do you have ideas for how to bring the CAS Diversity, Equity & Inclusion strategy to life? Email diversity@casact.org to share your feedback.

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About Mallika Bender

Mallika Bender, FCAS, MAAA is a property & casualty actuary with experience in the United States and Australia. She is the CAS diversity, equity & inclusion staff actuary. Bender’s pronouns are she/her/hers.

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