Introduction to 'New Governance and the Business Organization'
Law & Policy, Vol. 33, No. 4, pp. 449-458, 2011
10 Pages Posted: 15 Dec 2011 Last revised: 12 Aug 2012
Date Written: August 1, 2011
In the fall of 2010, the University of British Columbia Faculty of Law welcomed a group of scholars from around the world to consider the state, and evolution, of responsive regulation, in both theory and practice. The occasion was the presence of Dr. John Braithwaite as UBC Law’s inaugural Fasken Martineau Senior Visiting Scholar. This paper is an introductory essay to the special edition of the UBC Law Review devoted to the workshop’s resulting work products. The volume begins with John Braithwaite’s own reflections on the responsive regulation project. On one level, the set of essays that follows his can be read as an attempt to advance our understanding of responsive regulation in three substantive areas: tax (see the essays of Judith Freedman and Dennis Ventry), financial regulation (the contributions of Edward Balleisen, Cristie Ford, Janis Sarra, and Dimity Kingsford Smith), and environmental regulation (with essays by Natasha Affolder and Oren Perez). But to segregate this body of work into discrete areas of substantive subject interest is to miss the provocative cross-currents that run between the contributions to this volume. A clear objective of the organizers of this conference was to consciously erode the barriers that prevent learning across subject areas, and across disciplines. This introductory essay identifies broad conversations emerging from comparisons between diverse regulatory contexts that continue to renew, enrich, and add nuance to theories of responsive regulation today, nearly two decades later. Along with reviewing the significance of John Braithwaite’s contribution in this volume, this introduction highlights three of these cross-cutting themes in particular: the civic republican potential (or the lack thereof) inherent in regulatory interactions; contemporary nodal, networked, or multi-layered conceptions of regulation and governance; and the influence of meta-regulatory or new governance notions of ongoing regulatory learning, and their relationship to the responsive regulatory pyramid.
Keywords: new governance, corporations, monitorships, securities regulation, regulatory theory
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