Microinsurance in International Development Uses, Challenges and Questions of Equity

Microinsurance in International Development - Uses, Challenges and Questions of Equity

Sponsored by the READI Project and CAIDP.

Join us for a webinar on Feb 08, 2018 at 10:30 AM EST

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During this webinar, an expert panel drawn from our Canadian International Development community, the International Actuarial Association and the Canadian Institute of Actuaries will provide insights on the use of Microinsurance in International Development.

What is Micro Insurance?

Microinsurance refers to insurance services primarily offered to clients with low income and limited access to mainstream insurance services and other means of coping effectively with risk.  It is not a specific product or product line nor is it limited to a specific provider type. Rather microinsurance is the provision of cover to a specific market segment – in this case the poor. It is often offered by a combination of governments, donors and microfinance institutions. Currently, only 3% of the poor in the world’s 100 poorest countries have microinsurance, leaving approximately two billion people uninsured. This market segment represents both a huge potential market and opportunity to use microinsurance products to help reduce poverty for a large part of the world’s population. Garand and Swederick observe that low-income households are both exposed to more risk are more vulnerable since the coping strategies the poor have available to them often contribute to continuing or reinforcing the poverty cycle.  Source: May 2017;  Kartini International Consulting Inc. 

From the perspective of an Actuary:

Speaker – Nigel Bowman

Nigel Bowman is a qualified actuary. Before qualifying as an actuary via the Faculty of Actuaries in Scotland in 2001, he completed a Bachelor of Commerce degree at the University of Stellenbosch. After graduation from university, he worked in various life insurance product development roles at Metropolitan Life, a medium sized South African based life insurance company, before being appointed to head the product development function for Metropolitan’s expansion into sub-Saharan Africa. In this position he was part of the core team involved in setting up life insurance subsidiaries in a number of African countries. In particular, he was involved in establishing a subsidiary in Nigeria and was responsible for developing the company’s range of life insurance products for the retail mass and corporate markets. Nigel is now the Product and Distribution Executive of the International Actuarial Association.

Speaker-Denis Garand

From 1981 to 2000 worked for a cooperative insurance company as Group Actuary, Director of Marketing and Vice-President of Group insurance as well as an advisor to developing cooperative insurers. Since 2001, Denis had been an independent consultant, focusing on the Canadian group insurance industry, international microinsurance programs, health insurance and regulatory management of insurance industry. Canadian assignments have included strategic reviews, capital management, training, product development, pricing, mergers, insurance company start up and the development of the first Canadian disability incidence study. Denis is the preeminent expert on disability insurance in Canada, has advised insurance regulators in seven countries, and advised health insurance programs in 12 countries.

Internationally Denis Garand has worked on all facets of microinsurance focusing on micro health insurance. Assignment have been conducted for ADB, AKAM, BearingPoint, CCA, CGAP, FFH, MIME, ILO, ILO-STEP, Sanasa, GIZ, The World Bank, ICMIF and many others . He has experience in India, Pakistan, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Philippines, Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Timor Leste, Fiji, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Congo Mali, Senegal, Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, Benin, Rwanda, Egypt, Uganda, Tanzania, Swaziland, Malawi, South Africa, Haiti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Colombia, Peru, and Barbados on all aspects of micro insurance. Denis is Board member of the Microinsurance Network, IAA IAIS Working Group on actuaries in microinsurance and is co-author on many topics in microinsurance and health insurance.

Points from Nigel and Denis may include:

  • What is microinsurance (set the stage briefly)?
  • What is holding back wide spread use of microinsurance programs (scale, cost, etc.?)
  • What models could be used or adapted?
  • What is being developed for future application?

From a gender and equity perspective:

Speaker – Dana Peebles

Dana Peebles has 36 years’ experience in international development, with sub-specializations in gender equality, adolescent and youth participation and development and adult basic education and skills training.  For 30 of these years Ms. Peebles has focused her attention on gender equality, with a particular focus on institutional gender mainstreaming, social change management and gender issues in a private sector context. She has worked as a Project Gender Advisor for multiple CIDA or GAC-funded projects and has held Standing Offers and a supply arrangement in gender for CIDA/GAC since 2001 as well had a framework agreement in gender with Sida for 4 years. Through these arrangements she has provided a wide range of gender analysis services on multiple development cooperation projects. Recent gender analysis work for GAC-funded projects includes an assessment of gender issues related to micro-insurance and training issues related to gender in the extractives industry in Latin America.

Ms. Peebles also has solid experience as an evaluation Team Leader on diverse projects.  This includes 6 global and regional evaluations with UN agencies, 2 with UNDP and UN Women at the national level and having served as Team Leader for the Mid-Term Review of UNDP’s 2008-2013 Gender Equality Strategy. Ms. Peebles has also worked in project management and as technical advisor/analyst and trainer in related fields, including 10 years in the Middle East, Africa, Eastern Europe, Southeast and Central Asia, and Latin America. This includes 3.5 years working in diverse roles in Indonesia.

Ms. Peebles has an MA in International Development: Labour and Gender Studies and is based in Toronto, Canada. She speaks fluent English and Spanish and has a working knowledge of French and bahasa Indonesia. Ms. Peebles is also the founder and Director of Kartini International, an award winning consulting firm that specializes in gender equality services.


Points may include:

  • Are microinsurance programs equitable?
  • What issues need to be addressed to make them gender sensitive?
  • Experience and examples?

Panel discussion to follow.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

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