The Quality and Use of Regulatory Analysis in 2008
40 Pages Posted: 15 Jul 2010
Date Written: July 14, 2010
This paper assesses the quality and use of regulatory analysis for economically significant regulations produced by federal agencies in 2008. A nine-member research team used a six-point (0-5) scale to evaluate regulatory analyses according to criteria drawn from Executive Order 12866 on Regulatory Planning and Review, Office of Management and Budget Circular A-4 on Regulatory Analysis, and scholarly research. Principal findings include: (1) The average quality of regulatory analysis, though not high, is somewhat better than previous regulatory scorecards have shown; (2) Quality varies widely; (3) The biggest strengths in the analyses are accessibility and clarity; the biggest weakness is retrospective analysis; (4) Budget or transfer regulations receive much lower-quality analysis than other regulations; (5) A minority of the regulations contain evidence that the agency used the analysis in significant decisions; (6) Quality of analysis is positively correlated with the apparent use of the analysis in regulatory decisions; (7) The analyses contain many examples of - best practices; and (8) Greater diffusion of best practices could significantly improve the overall quality of regulatory analysis.
Keywords: regulatory impact analysis, benefit-cost, regulation, cost-benefit analysis, regulatory process, regulatory reform
JEL Classification: D73, D78, H10
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation