Who Should Appoint Regulators: Governments or Parliaments?

16 Pages Posted: 24 May 2008

Date Written: August 2008


The last two decades were characterized, in several countries, by the creation of several sectoral regulators and of competition authorities. An important issue in their statutes is to whom regulators are accountable: the Government or the Parliament. There are several legal arguments in favor of one or the other solution. We focus here in a different line of argument: because who appoints the regulator may determine its objective function, Government or Parliament appointment will lead to different outcomes. We identify under which conditions each possibility dominates. Several factors contribute for the relative welfare assessment: whether the regulator acts as a perfect agent of the nominating institution, or not; whether majorities are strong, or not; whether parties are industry-friendly or consumer-friendly; and whether there is a dominating party, or not.

Keywords: regulation, economic design, political economy

JEL Classification: L51, K20

Suggested Citation

Pita Barros, Pedro Luis, Who Should Appoint Regulators: Governments or Parliaments? (August 2008). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1133513 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1133513

Pedro Luis Pita Barros (Contact Author)

Universidade Nova de Lisboa ( email )

Campus de Campolide
Lisboa, 1099-032
+351 21 383 3624 (Phone)
+351 21 388 6073 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://ppbarros.fe.unl.pt

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics