Top 20 articles for 2020

In a year like no other, Actuaries Digital became a valuable source for the profession and beyond to remain informed on the Institute’s leading response to COVID-19, Dialogue and Green Paper releases, thought leadership and feel-good stories.

With more than 200 articles published so far in 2020, the Editorial Committee would like to thank everyone who has contributed to Actuaries Digital this year. Your efforts have ensured we continue to publish high quality, relevant articles on a diverse range of topics.

The newsworthiness and knowledge that was embedded in the 200+ published articles resulted in over 297,000 pageviews on Actuaries Digital, a 44.3% improvement on the pageviews recorded in 2019.

Here are the 20 ‘most read’ articles of 2020 on Actuaries Digital.

#20: My path to machine learning by Robert Daly

Coming in at no.20, Data Analytics Strategy Consultant, Rob Daly, shares his passion for data and tips on how you can become a data scientist. Read more.


#19: How the pandemic is affecting household income by Andrew Yeo and Yi-Wei Ho

Where are Australians most financially vulnerable to the effects of COVID-19, where are they most stable and who will have the longest road to recovery? Analytics and actuarial consultancy Taylor Fry reveal important insights from its Financial Impact Index, as the country slowly begins to rebuild its future. Read more.


#18: COVID-19 BLOG #1 – Author: Alex Stitt by Alex Stitt

As the nation stepped up in tackling the COVID-19 situation, Alex Stitt put together a dedicated blog series which covered updates of the pandemic as well as related issues that may impact our industries. Alex Stitt’s first blog comes in at no.18 of the most read articles for 2020. Read more.


#17: Why COVID-19 fatality rates look so different across the globe by Kirsten Armstrong

As the pandemic continued to develop around the world, Kirsten Armstrong investigated the reasons behind varying global fatality rates. Read more.


#16: Smoke Kills – So Why Aren’t We Counting It? By Chris Dolman

Published at the height of last Summer’s bushfire crisis in Australia, Chris Dolman highlights the significance and impact of smoke on the country, not just the fires. Read more.


#15: Update on Mortality in Australia by Jennifer Lang, Karen Cutter and Richard Lyon

Following the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ release of the mortality statistics for the June in Australia (for doctor-certified deaths only, excluding coroner-referred deaths), Jennifer Lang, Karen Cutter and Richard Lyon analysed this to update their previous detailed analysis up to May 2020. Read more.

COVID-19 and Mental Health by Abbey Huang

While the direct health implications of COVID-19 have been widely analysed and discussed, the more hidden and potentially more profound impact on mental health is often overlooked. This blog article discusses the impact of COVID-19 on mental health, as well as some of the implications for life insurers. Read more.

The Effects of COVID-19 on the Australian Health System and PHI by Brent Walker

From our improving understanding of how the SARS-COV-2 virus is spread and how it emerges in different segments of the population as the COVID-19 disease, this article explores the likely effect on different sectors of the health system. Read more.

COVID-19 BLOG AHS #3 – Author – Alex Stitt by Alex Stitt

Alex Stitt’s third COVID-19 Blog focused on pulled together relevant and current information about the COVID-19 disease outbreak. Read more.

I am an Actuary – May 2020 by Martin Mulcare

In this edition of I am an Actuary, Martin Mulcare unpacks the challenges faced and the opportunities embraced by seven actuaries in kick-starting their career in the profession. Read more.

Death rates for COVID-19: Key issues, published data and what it tells us by Michael Dermody, Alex Stitt, Iris Deng, Richard Lyon and Utsav Agarwala

In this article, a group of life insurance actuaries interrogate published morbidity data from around the world. They identify what the key issues are, what actuaries should be looking out for when using the data and includes a list of useful data sources. Read more.

What are the options for a smooth pandemic exit strategy? By Michael Rice, Alun Stevens and Michael Berg

Governments all over the world have their own policies in place to try contain the current pandemic, but what about an exit strategy? Michael Rice, Alun Stevens and Michael Berg from Rice Warner illustrate what our exit may be, considering the current policy, mortality rates and co-morbidities. Read more.

What is the relationship between unemployment rate and disability claims experience? By Iris Deng and Didier How Yin Fat

An economic downturn is intuitively associated with higher morbidity claims costs in general and unemployment rate tends to be a fairly good proxy for the state of the economy. However, the relationship between unemployment rate and disability claims experience is poorly understood and it is a challenge to accurately quantify the link between the unemployment rate and disability claims costs. Read more.

Coronavirus – What every actuary advising an Australian financial services organisation should know by Alex Stitt

In this article, Alex Stitt provides an overview of what is currently known about the 2019-nCoV outbreak and what actuaries advising financial services organisations (FSOs) should be thinking about. Read more.

Thoughts for Life Insurance Actuaries – Jennifer Lang, Michael Dermody, Colin Yellowlees and Alex Stitt by Jennifer Lang, Michael Dermody, Colin Yellowlees and Alex Stitt

This COVID-19 post is for those advising life insurers. It covers mostly financial considerations. In this fast-moving environment, this post provides more questions than answers, to help actuaries think through as many angles as possible. Read more.

Thoughts for General Insurance Actuaries by Estelle Pearson

As alert levels for COVID-19 heighten and risk management strategies are put in place, there is an uneasy level of uncertainty actuaries and businesses are facing. Estelle Pearson writes about what this pandemic situation means for General Insurance actuaries. Read more.

COVID-19 4 March – Status Update by Alex Stitt

The state of the coronavirus continues to develop across the globe. In this article, published just days prior to the national COVID-19 shutdown, Alex Stitt provides a status update of his COVID-19 article from February. Read more.

COVID-19 is more widespread in Australia than the headlines suggest by Douglas Isles

Coming in at no.3, Douglas Isles writes that by using a simple, reductive approach to estimating community infection, it can be demonstrated that there are substantially more COVID-19 carriers in the community, than confirmed, active cases. Read more.

My journey as an actuarial student by Alyssa Dai

The second most-read Actuaries Digital article for 2020 narrowed in on the journey of Alyssa Dai into the profession. Here, Alyssa details what attracted her to pursuing actuarial studies and her involvement with ‘Australian Wall Street’.

“What university life has taught me throughout the three years is something I will take with me through my career. Life is long, but I’m glad this is how I started it,” – Alyssa Dai.

Read more.

And the winner is…

#1: Identifying vulnerable populations in Australia using the COVID-19 Susceptibility Index by Calise Liu and Alan Xian

This examination on the potential for COVID-19 to impact unevenly across the Australian population takes out the top billing for the most read Actuaries Digital article for 2020, with a staggering 79,162 pageviews! This is a record number of pageviews for any Actuaries Digital article, and was a key reason behind the 44.3% increase in website traffic in 2020 compared to 2019. Congratulations, Calise and Alan! Read more.

Congratulations as well to Alex Stitt, who wrote and co-authored six articles which featured in the countdown.

If you would like to contribute to Actuaries Digital in 2021, please get in touch – we are always looking for keen authors and pertinent topics to write about. Subscribe to the magazine’s Digest here, and check out its new advertising opportunities.

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