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Outsourcing the Law

A Philosophical Perspective on Regulation

Pauline Westerman

Not only can services such as cleaning and catering be outsourced, but also governmental tasks such as making, applying and enforcing the law. Outsourcing the law is usually recommended for its cost-efficiency, flexibility, higher rates of compliance and its promise of deregulation. However, lawmaking is not the same as cleaning and rules are more than just tools to achieve aims. In this timely book, Pauline Westerman analyses this outsourcing from a philosophical perspective.
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Chapter 3: Between compliance and performance

Pauline Westerman

Extract

Chapter 3 analyses the implications of the differences between traditional (act-prescribing) rules and the kind of norms that emerge in an outsourcing context. Rules that prescribe actions and means may serve as compromises between different goals. In outsourced law, such compromises are more difficult to reach since every rule only prescribes (an element of) the goal to be achieved. Whereas traditional rules have an integrating effect, outsourced law leads to a proliferation of rules. The latter, since they are mainly seen and valued as instrumental to a given end, cannot serve as (exclusionary) reasons for action. Compliance with the rules is only valued to the extent that it serves to further or realise a particular aim.

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