Insurance for a better world


The Geneva Association mourns the passing of Orio Giarini, Secretary General of our organisation from 1973–2000, who died on Friday, 28 February 2020 in Trieste, Italy at the age of 84.

Orio will be remembered as a passionate and energetic leader and thinker, full of forward-looking ideas on the role of insurance in the economy and society and sustainable development. It was he who conceived, together with Fabio Padoa Schioppa, Raymond Barre and a small group of insurance executives, to establish The Geneva Association as a think tank devoted to the study of risks and insurance.

Officially founded in 1973 as the International Association for the Study of Insurance Economics, The Geneva Association had about a dozen members at the start, but quickly grew to include many insurers from all around the world, united in the conviction that insurance – faced as it was with great economic, social and technological changes – was on the verge of deep transformation and, more importantly, that understanding and managing risks would be of primary and growing importance to our modern societies.

For almost 30 years, Orio was The Geneva Association’s Secretary General. In 1976, under his leadership, The Geneva Association launched The Geneva Papers on Risk and Insurance, now our flagship journal and a renowned academic publication.

An honorary member of the Club of Rome, he had strong convictions and wrote numerous articles and books to defend them, including The diminishing returns of technology: An essay on the crisis in economic growth (1978); Dialogue on Wealth and Welfare: An Alternative View of World Capital Formation (1980); Cycles, Value and Employment: Responses to the Economic Crisis (1984); and The Limits to Certainty: Facing Risks in the New Service Economy (1989).

On behalf of our Board of Directors and insurance CEO members, we pay tribute to Orio Giarini and his invaluable contributions to The Geneva Association.