History & Insignia

A Brief History of the Society of Actuaries in Ireland

The Society of Actuaries in Ireland was founded at a meeting in the Russell Hotel, St. Stephen's Green, Dublin on Wednesday, 3rd May 1972. At that time there were seventeen actuaries, all Fellows of the Institute of Actuaries or of the Faculty of Actuaries, resident in Ireland.

The aim of the Society when it was founded was to provide a forum for actuaries in Ireland to discuss matters of professional interest and to promote the actuarial profession in Ireland. As the profession grew in size, the scope of the Society's activities widened considerably. In response to this, the Society was formally incorporated in 1988.

In 1993, the Society took on full responsibility for the professional conduct of actuaries in Ireland. It then issued its Memorandum on Professional Conduct and Practice, the Rules of its Disciplinary Scheme and Actuarial Standards of Practice covering a wide range of areas. The Memorandum on Professional Conduct and Practice was subsequently replaced by the Professional Conduct Standards and later the Code of Professional Conduct. For more information please see "Standards & Regulation".

An agreement between the member associations of the Actuarial Association of Europe (an organisation that comprises of actuarial associations throughout Europe) was signed by the Society in 1987. This extends mutual recognition to each other's actuarial qualifications, and EU actuaries who wish to pursue an actuarial profession in Ireland can, under the terms of the agreement, apply for admission as a Fellow of the Society. The Society also has mutual recognition agreements with the Actuaries Institute in Australia, the US Society of Actuaries, the Canadian Institute of Actuaries and Actuarial Society of South Africa.  For more information please see "Kindred Actuarial Organisations".

Today, the Society has grown to over 1300 Fellows resident in Ireland. In addition, there are approximately 120 Fellows who are non-resident but have business connections in Ireland. The Society has approximately 65 Associates and 30 Affiliates, as well as 12 Honorary Fellows. There are nearly 600 Students in the Society.

If you would like a more detailed history of the Society, contact us at info@actuaries.ie.

The founding members of the Society were:

William A. Honohan

Robert P. Willis

Cecil Ross

Geoffrey Rowe

Brian S. Reddin

Bernard Harberd

Joseph Byrne

Patrick J. Maher

Michael Robinson

Piers Segrave-Daly

R. Peter Delany

T. David Kingston

Michael O'Mahony

Brian Duncan

John White

Adrian D. Daly

Brendan Hayes



SAI Logo

The insignia is divided into four sections:


The “t”

the “t” represents an important link between Ireland and Statistics.  William Sealy Gossett was employed from 1899 to 1935 by Arthur Guinness, Son and Company in Dublin.  His work there led him to investigate statistical techniques appropriate to small samples.  He developed a probability distribution which he published in 1908 under the pseudonym “Student”.  This distribution has since become widely used in statistics as Student’s t-distribution.

Hour Glass

The Hour Glass

Taken from the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries coat of arms.

The Harp

The Harp

Representing Ireland.

The Owl

The Owl

Taken from the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries coat of arms.

The UK-based Institute of Actuaries and the Faculty of Actuaries merged in 2010 to form the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries.  The second and fourth sections of the insignia represent the fact that the Society has strong links with The Institute and Faculty of Actuaries (IFoA).  In particular, most actuaries in Ireland qualify by taking the IFoA's examinations.