Regulation, Politics, and the Environment
The seminar will explore the challenges of contemporary environmental regulation. It will start by examining the concept of regulation and its theoretical underpinnings. We will explore in this context some of the basic concepts of the economic and philosophical theory of regulation including public goods, externalities and coordination. We will then move to examine some of the basic instruments of modern regulation, distinguishing between command and control mechanisms, economic instruments, final demand instruments and liability rules. Drawing on this general introduction we will develop a typology of regulatory failures exploring some of the common explanations for these failures (e.g., regulatory capture, epistemic incompetence, scientific uncertainty). This theoretical discussion will be accompanied by examination of various case studies, including both national and global examples.