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Award challenges future leaders in financial services sector

26 February 2010: The Investment & Financial Services Association (IFSA) and Deloitte today issued a challenge to young executives in the financial services sector to submit ideas on how to solve some of the most pressing issues facing the Australian economy.

Launching the IFSA/Deloitte Future Leaders Award, Sarah Woodhouse, leader of the Wealth Management practice at Deloitte, said the Award offered an opportunity for those under the age of 30 to develop ideas and discuss them with industry leaders.

“The issues faced by the financial services sector impact all Australians. These include those pressing issues raised in the intergenerational report and the challenges posed by needing to integrate changing environmental, social and governance factors in the investment process.

“We are looking to this new generation to consider some of the industry’s toughest issues, to bring new thinking to a new decade,” Ms Woodhouse said.

John Brogden, CEO of IFSA said young people working in the financial services sector today faced the fallout of the Global Financial Crisis, working through issues of underinsurance, and how to deal with the huge savings gap issue that they and their children will have to pay for, if society does not deal with it quickly.

“Too often in today’s society we leave the big ideas and solutions to problems to senior executives running companies and institutions.

“This award recognises that the youth of today often approach issues from different angles and need to have an opportunity to discuss their view of the world. This Award offers the opportunity for young Australians to present their ideas to senior industry leaders in a structured paper,” Mr Brogden said.

The Future Leaders Award, now in its fifth year, offers an opportunity for financial services practitioners under 30 years of age to think innovatively about ways to improve operations and investor experience in four key areas of the sector. The four topics set for 2010 are:

  • Demonstrating the value of Life Insurance
  • Integrating environmental, social and governance factors into investment processes
  • Measuring and comprehending risk
  • Improving engagement with Superannuation.

Last year, Julia Feher from the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) won the Future Leaders Award for the work she did exploring ways to support quality financial advice.

Deloitte will award the winner of the Future Leaders’ Award 2010 an all expenses paid study tour to an overseas destination to share ideas with a Deloitte global leader.

2010 Future Leaders’ Topics

Demonstrating the value of life insurance: How can the life insurance industry better engage with Australians in a relevant, appealing and innovative way?

Integrating environmental, social and governance factors into investment processes: What barriers exist to incorporating environmental, social and governance factors into investment processes? How should these barriers be addressed?

Measuring and comprehending risk: How can the disclosure and communication of investment risk to retail investors be improved?

Improving engagement with superannuation: What action can the superannuation industry and the Australian Government take to increase young peoples’ engagement with their superannuation and take an interest in their retirement incomes?

Members of the judging panel:

Geoff Peck - Director, Industry & Government, Russell Investment Company
Ann Byrne - Chief Executive Officer, Australian Council of Super Investors
Kevin Davis - Professor of Finance, University of Melbourne & Research Director, Melbourne Centre for Financial Studies
Anne Coyne - Manager, Information Management & Design, MLC
John Evans - Associate Professor & Head of School Actuarial Studies, Deputy Director, Centre for Pensions and Superannuation, Australian School of Business, UNSW
Neil Rogan - Head of Marketing & Campaigns - Customer Value, AMP
Gerard Kerr - Head of Reinsurance, Marketing and Retail Products, Life Risk, ING
Jim Minto - Managing Director, TOWER Australia
John Crosswell - Executive General Manager, Life Risk, Suncorp
Paul Sainsbury - Director, Product Manufacturing, AMP
Phil Stockwell - Chief Operating Officer, BT Investment Management
Anthony Lane - Investment Consulting Chief Operating Officer Asia Pacific, Mercer
Mark O’Brien - Chief Investment Officer, AMP Capital Investors
Peter Labrie - Head of FirstWrap and Investment Products, Colonial First State
Dr Don Russell - Global Investment Strategist, BNY Mellon
Richard Weatherhead - Director, Rice Warner Actuaries

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