Deep Learning in Insurance – Theory and Practice (1/2 Feb) (on line)

In computational science, deep learning probably is one of the most heralded techniques of present time and recent history, mainly due to its versatility and impressive achievements likewise. Indeed, applications of deep learning range from beating the (human) world champion of the highly complicated Go game to the promise of deploying self-driving cars in the near future, on a large scale and all over the world.

Deep learning (DL) pertains to the field of artificial intelligence and is great at extracting and mastering the often highly non-linear patterns of a given process, whatever this process might be. The only main requirement is the availability of a large amount of data that describes the behaviour of the process under different conditions and a truckload of computational power. However, since the price of data storage and the effort of sampling data has dropped dramatically over the last years, and since Moore’s law on the increase of computational power does even nowadays not show any signs of a slowdown, fitting deep learning models that are able to produce extremely useful predictions are a reality and this already for some years now.

In other words, the time is high to also deploy this amazing technology in the insurance industry! However, the methodological framework that underlies this amazing technology is somewhat different from the statistical one that we’ve all grown accustomed to (mainly through our general love for GLM models), and the computational horsepower, needed to merely fit these models, is of an order of magnitude higher than the one needed to fit the classical statistical models.

Organised by the EAA – European Actuarial Academy GmbH in cooperation with the Instituto de Actuarios Españoles.


The practical sessions will make use of Keras, Tensorflow and R(Studio). Guidelines on how to install these tools on your own laptop will be provided several weeks prior to the beginning of the web session. As no practical hands-on exercise lesson will be provided, installation of these tools on your laptop is not a must, yet when the applications of DL will be discussed, participants will have the choice to run the code in real-time her/himself on her/his own laptop during this part of the web session.

Please check with your IT department if your firewall and computer settings support web session participation (the programme GotoTraining/GotoWebinar is used for the web session). Please also make sure that you are joining the web session with a stable internet connection. 

Purpose and Nature

The main purpose of this online training is to get the participants acquainted with DL models. To this end, a healthy mix between theory and practice will be provided, however, it is important to note that some time will be spend to go through the theoretical foundations of neural networks and hence DL, as the inner workings of these models are a bit different from the ones of the classic statistical models. Note that quite a bit of time will also spend on some real insurance applications, as to clearly illustrate how to use this amazing technology in practice. More specifically, applications on technical pricing in non-life and text analysis will be provided.


The language of the web session will be English.


Robin Van Oirbeek.

Robin Van Oirbeek, after having worked as a statistical/actuarial consultant for different companies, is now working as Lead Data Scientist at Allianz Benelux. He is also an invited lecturer at the University of Antwerp (UAntwerpen) and at the University of Louvain-la-Neuve (UCLouvain). He uses R, amongst others, on a daily basis and this for around 15 years now.


Monday, 01 February 2021

09:00 – 09:15 Introduction & welcome EAA

09:15 – 10:45 Introduction to DL models

10:45 – 11:00 Break

11:00 – 12:30 High-level view: dissecting a DL model

12:30 – 13:30 Break

13:30 – 14:45 Deep dive: loss functions & backprop

14:45 – 15:00 Break

15:45 – 16:00 Applications in insurance: technical pricing non-life

Tuesday, 02 February 2021

09:00 – 10:45 Deep dive: backprop & SGD

10:45 – 11:00 Break

11:00 – 12:30 Extra topics: regularization and RNN & CNN

12:30 – 13:30 Break

13:30 – 14:45 Applications in insurance: text analysis

14:45 – 15:00 Break

15:00 – 15:55 Applications cont’d & Q&A

15:55 – 16:00 Concluding remarks, closing of seminar (EAA)

(Time zone: CET – Central European Time)

Fees and Registration

The registration fee is € 640 plus 19% VAT until 1 December 2020.

After this date, the fee will be € 790 plus 19% VAT..


For this seminar, the Instituto de Actuarios Españoles recognizes 11 CPD hours of technical content under its CPD scheme