What Is the Canadian Institute Of Actuaries (CIA)?

The Canadian Institute of Actuaries (CIA) is an organization of professional actuaries in Canada. The CIA aims to promote the role of actuaries as the leading experts in the financial modeling and risk management fields. It also works to help advance actuarial science through research and the education of its members.

Actuaries are professionals who use mathematics to assess risk and calculate statistics. Their specialized skills in finance involve making calculations for insurance companies, structuring pension plans and crafting government regulations and social programs. 

The CIA is a self-regulated organization that enforces its own standards of professional conduct and performance with regard to its members. Under the national CIA, there are numerous smaller provincial actuarial clubs. The organization requires members to reside in Canada and to belong to an approved actuarial organization. The institute also issues the Fellow of the Canadian Institute of Actuaries (FCIA) designation to actuaries, which is a requirement under Canadian law for all practicing actuaries.

Understanding the Canadian Institute Of Actuaries (CIA)

The Canadian Institute of America, based in Ottawa, is a member-driven organization. Members must pay dues once enrolled. The institute offers four different types of enrollment: associate, fellow, affiliate and correspondent. Each has its own requirements. 

Canada's parliament established The Canadian Institute of Actuaries in March, 1965. In 2021, it has about 3,900 members. 

Canada has regulations that require non-insured pension plans to be valued once every three years by an FCIA. In order for an actuary to be designated an FCIA, the actuary must pass an exam issued by the Society of Actuaries, another professional actuary organization, as well as the Practice Education Course (PEC), which is administered by the CIA.

Actuaries at Work

The CIA considers actuaries business people, and promotes the idea that professional actuaries have, “practical business sense, the creativity to apply training and experience to new problems and provide innovative solutions, and the communication skills required to convince both colleagues and clients.”

In practice, most actuaries work for insurance companies, where the need to accurately predict and assess risk plays an important role in the business’ financial stability.

According to CNN, becoming an actuary often appeals to people searching for a new career, particularly because actuaries are in demand, CNN also notes that being an actuary usually offers a relatively high salary and on-the-job training without requiring a graduate degree.