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Aug 1, 2023

ACORD Releases Update to the Reference Architecture

Version 2.11 Includes Updates to Three Data Facets

NEW YORK, NY, August 2, 2023 – ACORD, the standards-setting body for the global insurance industry, today released an update to the ACORD Reference Architecture. This release covers the three data-related facets of the Reference Architecture: the Data Model, Information Model, and Business Glossary.

The ACORD Reference Architecture provides an enterprise architecture framework for the insurance industry. It is a series of seven interrelated industry models, or facets, that help define insurance concepts and processes, enabling organizations across geographies and lines of business to run, develop, modify, and maintain various insurance industry applications.

Business architects, developers, engineers, and other industry stakeholders can utilize the different facets of the Reference Architecture to design data warehouses and reporting solutions, integrate third-party applications, accelerate application development, among other use cases.

“Every insurance company has a variety of systems that house its data in disparate ways,” said Pat Corless, Senior Vice President, Global Chief Enterprise Architect, ACORD. “The ACORD Reference Architecture is a widely used, proven way to conform all this data so it can be consumed together.”

The version 2.11 release provides significant enhancements to maintain alignment of the three data-related facets of the Reference Architecture with ACORD Data Standards, containing more than 250 updates to various element types. The updates to the Information Model, a comprehensive framework of all fundamental insurance concepts, include enhancements to several subject areas, such as an extended definition of insurable objects to encompass both physical and intangible objects, and an enhancement to the party structure to include virtual parties such as AI systems and IoT devices.

Corless continued, “The real value of data comes from understanding it across the enterprise, with the consumers not having to worry about the technical constraints of how it is stored.”

The Data Model, a logical representation of insurance entities and relationships, has been revised to reflect the enhancements made to the Information Model. The Business Glossary is a dictionary of more than 6,000 terms that consists of insurance concepts and includes definitions, usages, and references, and has also been updated in this release to clarify existing terms and add new ones.

“ACORD has had decades of experience talking to hundreds of our members, and we've distilled a representation of processes and data that work across all niches of the insurance industry,” Corless added. “While every member has their unique situation and set of challenges, the ACORD Reference Architecture can give a good head start to everybody's journey.”

The complete ACORD Reference Architecture, as well as its individual components, are available by subscription to both ACORD members and non-members. To download release version 2.11, or for more information about the ACORD Reference Architecture, please visit