Coglianese and PPR Receive Award for New Work on Codes and Standards

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National Institute of Standards and Technology awards $160,000 to study codes and standards in public policy and legal education.

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Penn Law professor Cary Coglianese and the Penn Program on Regulation (PPR) have been awarded $160,000 from the National Institute of Standards and Technology of the U.S. Department of Commerce for the study of codes and standards in legal education and public policy.

Coglianese is the Edward B. Shils Professor of Law and Professor of Political Science and Director of the Penn Program on Regulation. He specializes in the study of regulation and regulatory processes, with an emphasis on the empirical evaluation of alternative regulatory strategies and the role of public participation, negotiation, and business-government relations in policy making.

“Professor Coglianese and the Penn Program on Regulation are doing important research on the mechanisms that allow policy to work,” said Ted Ruger, Dean of Penn Law. “Their scholarship reaches across boundaries, intersecting with everything from public policy to business to technology.”

Coglianese will collaborate with Shari Shapiro L’05, a research affiliate at PPR. Previously a partner at Cozen O’Connor, Shapiro brings to the project extensive professional experience working with and developing building codes and energy standards.

The $160,000 award was issued as part of the Standards Services Curricula Development Cooperative Agreement Program, which supports the integration of standards into undergraduate and graduate curriculum at U.S. colleges and universities. Award recipients work with NIST to strengthen education and learning about standards and standardization.

The award to the Penn Program on Regulation covers two specific projects. One will develop and pilot five course modules on legal issues related to codes and standards that can be integrated into common and specialty law school courses, such as property law, administrative law, environmental law, real estate law, and intellectual property law. It will include teaching materials that can be used by instructors with little or no prior knowledge about codes and standards.

The second project will develop and pilot two in-depth, multi-media, and complementary public policy case studies to help educate future lawyers and policymakers on the legal and administrative issues that surround the development, adoption, and enforcement of codes and standards. This project will also include extensive teaching materials for instructors.

“Codes and standards touch vital areas of the economy,” said Coglianese. “As educators, we need to do all we can ensure that tomorrow’s lawyers and policymakers have the tools to make sound decisions and shape effective public policies, especially in the many industrial fields affected by codes and standards.”

Formerly known as the National Bureau of Standards, the National Institute of Standards and Technology works with industry to develop and apply measurements, standards, and technology. The technology, measurement, and standards provided by NIST are used in everything from automated teller machines and atomic clocks to mammograms and semiconductors.

Under Coglianese’s leadership, the Penn Program on Regulation brings together faculty from across Penn to foster and disseminate research, engage policymakers, and prepare future leaders to meet the regulatory challenges of the global economy. Through a combination of rigorous analysis, cross-disciplinary scholarly collaboration, engagement with the business, NGO, and governmental communities, and public outreach through The Regulatory Review, its daily, student-run online publication, PPR seeks not only to advance the study of regulatory processes but also to improve them.