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Swiss Re adopts IBM's tech platform for underwriting

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Swiss Re Ltd. on Thursday said it has adopted IBM Corp.'s cognitive computing technology platform Watson to develop underwriting solutions.

According to a spokeswoman for Swiss Re, the reinsurer will use Watson to help the firm's life insurance underwriters quickly identify and react to emerging trends in the market.

By coupling Watson's capabilities with human experience, Swiss Re underwriters could make better informed decisions and more accurately price risk, according to the Swiss Re statement released Thursday.

The spokeswoman said it is too early in the partnership to discuss how exactly the data will be applied to Swiss Re's life and health reinsurance business and what data will be used.

According to the statement, IBM's Watson technology is able to analyze large amounts of data, develop insights and learn from its interactions with both humans and the data. Humans are able to interact with Watson as they would another person.

“Systems like cognitive computing can continuously read the ever growing amount of information while helping us connect the dots and making it easier to interpret that information in the right context,” Thomas Wellauer, Swiss Re's group chief operating officer, said in the statement. “Swiss Re and IBM are collaborating to establish a vision for cognitive computing at Swiss Re and the wider insurance industry.”