Young Actuaries' Public Policy Essay Competition

The 2023 Young Actuaries’ Public Policy Essay Competition is now open!

With a change of government and new Parliament in Australia, there is a renewed energy around public policy making in Australia. Many areas have been identified as worthy of ambitious reform. These include but are not limited to: addressing climate change and more generally sustainability; improving Australia’s energy system; strengthening while managing associated funding pressures for many systems of care (including health, aged, disability and child); improving housing (including affordability, planning and taxation); embracing the opportunities and managing the risks of a digital economy; and addressing inequities between different groups (including inter- and intra-generational, for specific populations such as First Nations people, and by gender) and more generally inclusiveness of society.

Such an environment is the perfect time to display how actuaries use data for good.

2023 Essay Topic:

  • Briefly outline an important current public policy challenge facing Australia demonstrating how actuaries can use data for good to help solve that challenge.

Your essay should illustrate how outcomes for Australians can be improved in a public policy area through considered analysis and communication of that analysis, including data or graphic visualisations that can engage a wide audience.

The essay should be suitable for an external (non-actuarial) audience looking for thought leadership. It should implicitly promote awareness of the profession by being a strong example of how actuaries can use their skills and knowledge to contribute to public policy reform.

Additional Information

  • Authored by a Member of the Actuaries Institute Australia under 35 years of age.
  • Addresses the topic, is well written and within the 4,000-word limit.
  • The winning essay receives a $4,000 prize and will be published in Actuaries Digital (concise format) and may be offered for external publication under the Actuaries Institute brand (as a Dialogue).
  • Essays can be by an individual or multiple authors.
  • The winning essay will be selected by the President, Chair of Public Policy Council Committee and CEO.
  • Entries to be submitted to the Public Policy Team by Friday 27 January 2023.

Interested participants are encouraged to share their topic via an expression of interest with the Public Policy Team in a short email.

“Actuaries have a strong social purpose and can contribute to outcomes to make society more sustainable and resilient, fairer and richer. Our involvement in public policy showcases the profession’s unique skills and strengthens our partnerships with government and industry.”

Chair Public Policy Council Committee - Anthony Lowe

“Contributing to public policy discussions is a key attribute of the profession. It’s great the next generation is demonstrating such strong skills.” 
Actuaries Institute CEO - Elayne Grace

2021 Public Policy Essay Competition

The winner of the Institute’s 2021 Young Actuaries' Public Policy Essay Competition was Laura Dixie (Manager at Taylor Fry). Laura’s essay demonstrated a strong understanding how public policy can tackle problems affecting society and the many ways in which actuaries can be involved in such work.

The topic for the 2021 essay competition asked entrants to explain how the COVID-19 pandemic demonstrated the value of actuarial thinking. The judging panel looked for evidence of lessons learnt, future implications and responses from the actuarial profession focusing on public policy issues.

Laura Dixie

2018 Public Policy Essay Competition

In 2018, The Institute’s Public Policy Essay Competition attracted a host of young authors whose essays demonstrated that actuaries can apply their skills across a range of fascinating topics; from mental health to blockchain, road pricing, the gig economy, complexity in retirement, genetic testing and many more.

The winning essay Modern government service delivery by Hugh Miller was singled out for its clear communication, logical structure and innovative approach to a growing issue for governments – how to deliver important services within ever tightening budgets. In the below video, Hugh discusses the key points and conclusions in his essay.