UCU and UUK announce appointment of Chair for USS Joint Expert Panel

Universities UK (UUK) and the University and College Union (UCU) announced last week that Joanne Segars OBE had been appointed as the Chair of the Joint Expert Panel (JEP) which will examine the valuation of the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS). UCU also announced that it has nominated Professor Saul Jacka, Professor Deborah Mabbett and Associate Professor Catherine Donnelly to sit on the joint panel. Ronnie Bowie, Sally Bridgeland, and Chris Curry will join the panel as Universities UK’s nominations. The Joint Expert Panel has been set up by UUK and UCU to examine the valuation of the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS). The Joint Expert Panel, which was established as part of an agreement reached between UCU and UUK at ACAS in March 2018, will start its work shortly so that it can report back in September 2018. Read the panel members’ full bios

Brief biographies of members of Joint Expert Panel

Joanne Segars OBE is a widely respected figure in the pensions community. She is currently the Chair of LGPS Central Ltd, which pools the investments of nine large Midlands-based local authority pension funds. Prior to this, she worked for many years in senior positions in the pensions sector, including as Chief Executive of the Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association (PLSA) (previously the National Association for Pension Funds (NAPF) for over 10 years and as Head of Pensions at the Trades Union Congress (TUC). Joanne is a current board member of NOW: Pensions, and the Environment Agency.

Saul Jacka is a professor of statistics at the University of Warwick and a Turing fellow at the Alan Turing Institute. He has worked in mathematical finance for over 30 years, and much of his research has focussed on how this field links with actuarial science. He is also a trustee of a defined benefit pension scheme for non-USS staff at the University of Warwick, and an independent actuarial examiner for the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries (IFA).

Deborah Mabbett has a strong academic background in pension policy. A professor of public policy at Birkbeck, much of her research has focussed on the relationship between the state and occupational or private pension schemes. Her current research focuses on the implications of rising and flexible retirement ages for the management of pension assets. She holds a PhD in Economics from the University of Oxford and has previously worked as an advisor to the World Bank in Lithuania and Moldova. She is also currently co-editor of the Political Quarterly.

Catherine Donnelly has worked as an advisor on pension scheme valuations and investment strategies for several pension consultancy firms. She is currently an associate professor at Heriot-Watt University, where she heads up the Risk Insight Lab focussing on pensions, investment and insurance research. Her own research examines different approaches to pensions and retirement income including defined benefit and collective defined contribution models.

(Biographic Information from UCU - https://www.ucu.org.uk/article/9493/UCU-announces-nominations-to-USS-joint-expert-panel)

Ronnie Bowie is an experienced actuary, currently Partner (previously Senior Partner) at Hymans Robertson having joined the firm in 1980. Since August 2016 Ronnie has undertaken the role of Chair of Court at the University of Dundee. Ronnie was President of the Faculty of Actuaries and was a driving force behind its merger with the Institute of Actuaries becoming the first President of the combined Institute and Faculty of Actuaries. He is Chair of the Royal Bank of Scotland Pension Scheme, Chair of the With Profits Committee of the Prudential Assurance Corporation, Chair of Byhiras Trust and a fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.

Sally Bridgeland currently combines governance consultancy for Avida International with a number of non-executive and advisory roles including a non-executive directorship at insurer Royal London, at Impax Asset Management plc and Local Pensions Partnership (LPP) Limited, where she chairs its FCA regulated investment company. She is a trustee at both NEST Corporation and the Lloyds Bank pension schemes and at the Nuclear Liabilities Fund. Sally was previously the Chief Executive Officer of BP Pension Trustees Limited. Before BP, Sally spent twenty years with Aon Hewitt (originally Bacon & Woodrow) working both as a pensions consultant and in the investment practice. Sally was the first lady Master of the Worshipful Company of Actuaries in 2016–17.

Chris Curry is the Director of the Pensions Policy Institute (PPI) with overall responsibility for leading and managing the PPI. At the PPI Chris has authored and presented a number of research reports analysing and other provision for retirement income. In 2017, Chris was one of the three co-chairs for the DWP Automatic Enrolment Review Advisory Group. The review looked at ensuring workplace pensions continue to meet the needs of individual savers, and employers, whilst remaining fair, affordable and sustainable for future generations. Chris started his career as an Economic Adviser at the Department of Social Security (now the Department for Work and Pensions), before joining the ABI as Senior Economist.

(Biographic Information from UUK - https://www.universitiesuk.ac.uk/policy-and-analysis/Documents/2018/uuk-announcement-jep-members-24-may.pdf)