Executive Education


10 Oct 2019

Professor Chris Holland appointed to insurance industry’s new expert panel

Chris Holland

Chris Holland, Professor of Information Management and Director of Decision Sciences in the School of Business and Economics, has been appointed to a new expert group, set up by the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA), to look at digital ethics in insurance.

In May 2019, EIOPA published the key finding of its thematic review on the use of Big Data Analytics (BDA) in motor and health insurance. This revealed how insurance firms are implementing ambitious digital transformation strategies to embrace the opportunities offered by new technologies and remain competitive in today’s increasingly global and digital economy.

The review showed how traditional data sources, such as demographic data or exposure data, are increasingly combined with new sources like online media data or telematics data, providing greater granularity and frequency of information about consumer’s characteristics, behaviour and lifestyles. This enables the development of increasingly tailored products and services and more accurate risk assessments.

While there are many opportunities arising from digitalisation, both for the insurance industry as well as for consumers, there are also risks that need to be further addressed in practice.

In response EIOPA has established a multidisciplinary Consultative Expert Group to advise EIOPA on the development of a set of principles that will promote responsible financial innovation within insurance for the benefit of the European consumer. The principles will address, from a fairness/ethical perspective, the use of new business models, technologies and data sources in insurance. There will be a specific focus on pricing and underwriting and special consideration will also be given to the impact on vulnerable consumers.

The group’s membership includes academics, researchers, service providers and consumers with extensive knowledge and experience across a broad range of areas including data science, computer science, insurance law, data protection and consumer protection.

Professor Holland has worked with a range of international business organisations on technology implementation, evaluation of IT projects and digital strategy. His current research focuses on data analytics, decision-making in an online customer journey context, and digital marketing strategy, with a particular emphasis on developing novel approaches to commercial data sets. The ideas and research concepts have been applied to a range of commercial problems. These include the analysis and evaluation of consumer search and buying behaviour, the modelling of competition in online markets and new techniques for online competitor profiling.

Professor Holland is currently working on the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to develop the next generation of insurance services, funded by the UKRI, and part of the UK Government’s Industrial Strategy.