Big Data and the Future of Insurance: How Data-centric Technologies Influence the Competitive Structure of the European Life and Health Insurance Industry

Niklas Aa. Hedegaard

Student thesis: Master thesis


Technology has the power to transform entire industries overnight.The insurance industry will become datafied by the disruptive power of big data analytics, cloud computing, Internet of Things (IoT) and predictive modeling, to name a few. The purpose of this thesis is to understand how developments in data-centric technologies have influenced the collection, processing and use of data in insurance and how these developments have changed the competitive structure of the European life and health insurance industry. This is a case study of the EU life and health insurance industry over three distinct technological paradigms: analogue, digital and data. The analysis of each paradigm shows how technology has the power to transform industry competition, and that the winning technologies, which form the basis of the following technological paradigm, are selected through economic, institutional and social forces operating ex post.Very few studies have examined big data and insurance, yet this thesis shows how big data analytics is able to disrupt a very conservative industry such as insurance, which is critical knowledge for insurance companies and researchers alike.Most notably, it demonstrates how the entire model of risk management, which is essential to insurance, will change with the introduction of individual and dynamic risk assessment.

EducationsMSc in International Business and Politics, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2018
Number of pages92