Regulatory Opinion: 2016 in Review

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The Regulatory Review celebrates the end of 2016 with the top opinion posts by regulatory law experts from the past year.

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As the new year arrives, The Regulatory Review would like to reflect on the many important regulatory developments and debates that occurred in the United States and around the world in 2016. We also want to recognize some of the excellent work we had the privilege to feature on The Regulatory Review this past year. From Monday, December 26th through Wednesday, December 28th, we are presenting the top 50 essays published on The Regulatory Review over the past 12 months, based on the number of page views.

Today we feature, in alphabetical order by author, the top Opinion essays from 2016. Visit our “Regulatory Year in Review” series main page for information about the top news and analysis essays and series.

Combatting External and Internal Regulatory Capture

Reeve T. Bull (Administrative Conference of the United States) | Monday, June 20

External and internal capture may be reduced through a more logical division of labor between Congress and agencies.

Preventing Regulatory Capture

Mark Calabria (Cato Institute) | Thursday, June 23

When a regulation’s benefits exceed its costs, simplicity and interdisciplinary processes are essential to reducing capture.

Challenges in Measuring Regulatory Capture

Daniel Carpenter (Harvard University) | Wednesday, June 22

Regulatory capture, neither inevitable nor a death trap for agencies, must be reduced to advance public policy goals.

Improving Benefit-Cost Analysis by Making it Simpler

Christopher Carrigan (George Washington University) & Stuart Shapiro (Rutgers University) | Monday, July 25

Earlier and less burdensome regulatory impact analyses would lead to more transparent, better regulatory decisions.

Is Government Truly Broken?

Cary Coglianese (University of Pennsylvania Law School) | Tuesday, November 15

Citizens and their leaders must strive to work together to solve problems and improve social and economic conditions.

Robot Regulators Could Eliminate Human Error

Cary Coglianese (University of Pennsylvania Law School) | Monday, May 16

Scholar examines what a world of regulation by robot might look like—an innovation that could be just around the corner.

The Elusiveness of Regulatory Capture

Cary Coglianese (University of Pennsylvania Law School) | Tuesday, July 5

Regulatory capture is hard to pin down, its elusiveness stemming from four principal factors.

Stress Tests and the End of Bank Supervision

Peter Conti-Brown (The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania) | Thursday, April 21

New federal authority surrounding stress tests means banking supervisors take a back seat to regulators.

Exploring Regulatory Capture’s Unanswered Questions

Susan Dudley (George Washington University) | Monday, July 4

Rent-seeking and profit-seeking behavior provide valuable insights into the concept of regulatory capture.

How OSHA Can Succeed with the Cards It Is Dealt

Adam M. Finkel (University of Michigan School of Public Health) | Monday, October 3

Despite its wide-ranging capabilities, OSHA has often let its detractors have their way. To combat this, it should enlist partners in all directions.

Productivity, Inequality, and Economic Rents

Jason Furman (Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers) | Monday, June 13

Curbing excessive economic rents might bolster productivity and address rising inequality.

(Not) Prosecuting Financial Crimes

Brandon L. Garrett (University of Virginia School of Law) | Tuesday, June 21

Holding companies accountable for crimes is essential, yet more must be done to end “too big to jail” concerns.

A Paradigm Shift in the Cost-Benefit State

John D. Graham (Indiana University Bloomington) & Paul R. Noe (American Forest & Paper Association) | Tuesday, April 26

A 2009 court decision could spur more cost-benefit analysis in the regulatory process.

A Reply to Professor Amy Sinden’s Critique of the “Cost-Benefit State”

John D. Graham (Indiana University Bloomington) & Paul R. Noe (American Forest & Paper Association) | Tuesday, September 26

Cost-benefit analysis is the most preferable form of analysis, and it should continue to be employed for important regulatory decisions.

Campaign Finance’s Creeping Deregulation

Richard L. Hasen (University of California, Irvine, School of Law) | Wednesday, April 20

Recent court rulings, bureaucratic failings, and political conflict have loosened campaign finance rules.

Still Seeking Contraceptive Compromise After Zubik v. Burwell

Allison K. Hoffman (UCLA School of Law) | Monday, July 11

Zubik v. Burwell highlights thorny issues surrounding Obamacare’s contraceptive coverage requirement.

Self-Deception and Regulatory Compliance

Donald C. Langevoort (Georgetown University Law Center) | Tuesday, August 2

Firms vary considerably in how they interpret regulatory commands and signals, posing enforcement challenges.

Fighting Regulatory Capture in the 21st Century

Mike Lee, U.S. Senator (R-Utah) | Thursday, June 16

Closer congressional supervision can prevent special interests from dominating the regulatory process.

Donald Trump, the “Workers’ Party” Candidate, on Regulation

Brian F. Mannix and Susan Dudley (George Washington University) | Monday, October 24

Experts argue that Donald Trump’s focus on jobs and worker impacts instead of the application of the net social benefits test is imprudent.

Types of Regulation

Wendell Pritchett (University of Pennsylvania Law School) | Tuesday, April 5

Those seeking to reform the regulation of higher education must understand the available tools.

Prosecuting Corporate Criminals

Jed. S. Rakoff (United States District Court Judge for the Southern District of New York) | Monday, September 26

Prosecutions of individual corporate criminals can, in fact, be successful—and are critical for attaining justice.

Supreme Court Remains Skeptical of the “Cost-Benefit State”

Amy Sinden (Temple University Law School) | Monday, September 26

Recent Court decisions have not created a presumption in favor of formal cost-benefit analysis.

A Shift in the Energy Regulatory Regime

David Spence (University of Texas at Austin) | Monday, July 18

Two Supreme Court decisions raise questions about the role of states in emerging electricity markets.

The Coming of the Regulatory Budget

Jim Tozzi (Center for Regulatory Effectiveness) | Friday, January 8

Regulatory expert highlights the “second most important institutional feature of the regulatory state.”

Do We Know How Risky E-Cigarettes Are?

W. Kip Viscusi (Vanderbilt Law School) | Monday, November 14

E-cigarettes are less dangerous than is generally believed, posing a unique information challenge for regulators.

The Misguided Manifesto of Regulatory Reform

John Walke (Natural Resources Defense Council) | Monday, May 2

Recent proposed legislation may weaken key regulatory and law enforcement mechanisms.

Courts Regulating the Regulators

Christopher Walker (Ohio State University Moritz College of Law) | Monday, April 25

Recent cases and proposed legislation reveal decreasing deference to agencies’ interpretation of their own regulations.

Corporate Capture of the Rulemaking Process

Elizabeth Warren, U.S. Senator (D-Mass.) | Tuesday, June 14

The right regulatory reforms can level the playing field between the public and powerful corporate players.

How Government Can Root Out Regulatory Capture

Sheldon Whitehouse, U.S. Senator (D-R.I.) | Wednesday, June 15

It is time for government to stop private interests from gaining improper influence over regulators.