Reinventing Rationality: The Role of Regulatory Analysis in the Federal Bureaucracy

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August 2010



In this book, Professor McGarity reveals the complex and problematic relationship between the "regulatory reform" movements initiated in the early l970s and the United States' federal bureaucracy. Examining both the theory and application of "regulatory reform" under the Reagan administration, the author succeeds in offering both a relevant analysis and critique of "regulatory reform" and its implementation through bureaucratic channels. Using several case studies from the early Reagan years, this book describes the clash of regulatory cultures resulting from the President's attempt to incorporate "regulatory analysis" into the bureaucratic decisionmaking process. McGarity examines the roles that regulatory analysts and their counterparts in the Office of Management and Budget play in decisionmaking by offering hundreds of interviews with scientists, engineers, regulatory analysts and upper level personnel in federal agencies. The author then critiques the reformers' claim that regulatory analysis will result in "better" decisionmaking. Yet while McGarity recognizes the limitations of regulatory analysis, he concludes with suggestions for enhancing its effectiveness. This book could be used not only as a textbook for political science and government courses but also for graduate applications in public policy and public administration.


Introduction; Part I. The Clash of Regulatory Cultures: 1. The evolution of the regulatory analysis programme; 2. Rational decision-making as regulatory reform; 3. Case studies of regulatory analysis in the decision-making process; Part II. The Virtues and Limitations of Analysis: 4. Virtues of regulatory analysis; 5. Limitations of regulatory analysis; 6. Regulatory analysis in the real world; Part III. Structuring Regulatory Analysis into the Decision-Making Process: 7. Roles for the regulatory analyst; 8. The hierarchical model; 9. The outside advisor model; 10. The team model; 11. The adversarial model; 12. A hybrid model; 13. Selecting the right model; Part IV: Review of Regulatory Analysis: 14. Office of management and budget review of regulatory analysis; 15. Judicial review of regulatory analysis; Part V. Conclusions: 16. The appropriate role for analysis in the modern regulatory state.


"It should be important background reading...has much to recommend it from an international, descriptive, and perhaps even prescriptive standpoint...well written and should be interesting background material on the current status of regulatory analysis in U.S. government." B. Dan Wood, source??? "Institutional economists, political scientists, and other policy researchers, advisors, and practitioners will likely find this book a worthy addition to their shelves and reading lists...McGarity's book is an important and valuable companion to the literature on regulation." Timothy J. Brennan, Journal of Economic Issues "The book is well-written and insightful, based on interviews with agency officials and on documents and other scholarly sources. It will appeal to both scholars and practitioners (especially, policy makers and lawyers). Its subtle blending of these different perspectives makes us rethink our approach to regulatory reform and policy." Roy Shin, American Review of Public Administration "...an exhaustive and generally well balanced treatment of regulatory analysis. The attention to actual case studies is exemplary...a solid work and a necessary read for those who are interested in understanding the decisionmaking process that is forging the social regulation emanating from the federal government." Bob Williams, Southern Economic Journal
EAN: 9780521402569
ISBN: 0521402565
Untertitel: New. Sprache: Englisch.
Erscheinungsdatum: August 2010
Seitenanzahl: 406 Seiten
Format: gebunden
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