Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 89, Issue 1, pp 77–89 | Cite as

Independence, Conflict of Interest and the Actuarial Profession

  • Sally Gunz
  • John McCutcheon
  • Frank Reynolds


The actuarial profession has a long history of providing critical expertise to society. The services delivered are some of the most complex and mysterious to outsiders of all professions but little has been written about the professional responsibilities of actuaries in the academic literature beyond that of the profession itself. This paper makes the case that the issues surrounding professional independence of actuaries are, in principle, similar to those that faced the audit profession before the scandals and resultant regulatory changes early this century. It is argued that, despite the position taken by the actuarial profession and management, the status quo raises genuine concerns about conflicts of interest and independence and that the risks that arise are of sufficient magnitude that they should at least be the subject of a full debate.

Key words

conflict of interest actuaries auditors 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of WaterlooWaterlooCanada
  2. 2.Wilfrid Laurier UniversityWaterlooCanada
  3. 3.University of WaterlooWaterlooCanada

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