New Approaches to Regulatory Enforcement
- New Horizons in Law and Economics series
Chapter 9: Concluding remarks
Despite the recent “free market” global trends, governments in modern societies hold a central position in directing and controlling corporate activity through regulations. To attain socially desirable ends, such regulations must be adequately enforced, while taking into consideration the particularities of the regulatory ecology. This book seeks to identify a structure of enforcement policy that efficiently induces corporate proactive compliance. In pursuing this goal, the analysis considers the following particular factors regarding the regulatory ecology: Corporate regulatees – The organizational settings of corporations, in which various agents act on behalf of their corporate employers, involve unique aspects that pose certain challenges to the traditional enforcement systems which are directed at individual primary actors. The dispersion of responsibility within corporations, the difficulties involved in controlling incorporated groups of actors, as well as potential conflicts of interest within the corporate “black box,” require policymakers to avoid treating corporations as monoliths. Instead, enforcement policies must be attentive to the composite structures of corporate regulatees and produce compliance incentives tailored to such structures. Proactive compliance – Unlike traditional criminal laws, regulations normally provide detailed standards of behavior; they are frequently updated to meet ever-changing market needs; and they often require a certain level of expertise to be fully grasped and obeyed. Hence, an enforcement policy directed at inducing corporate regulatory compliance must encourage regulatees to move from a “reactive” to a “proactive” compliance approach, that is, to take the required steps to ensure adequate implementation of regulatory requirements.
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