Reviewing Retrospective Regulatory Review (2015-2016)

How well do regulations actually work—and, in turn, how well do government reviews of regulatory impacts actually work?

This project team studied the emerging efforts of government agencies throughout the world to evaluate the actual impacts of their regulatory programs—so-called “retrospective regulatory review.” Team members formulated five research questions: What kinds of retrospective regulatory reviews are governments and other bodies conducting? What methodologies do these reviews adopt? Which regulations are being reviewed and why? Which regulatory impacts do reviewers try to assess? Who does (or should do) the retrospective reviews?

Through substantive case studies at the local, national and international levels, team members examined current practices and how to improve them. They conducted interviews in Washington with officials at several federal agencies and drafted a signature Duke report on retrospective regulatory review.


Summer 2015 – Spring 2016

Team Outcomes

Duke report on retrospective regulatory review (forthcoming)

Reviewing Retrospective Regulatory Review Bass Connections Project (poster by Edward Balleisen, Jonathan Wiener, Lori Bennear, Elizabeth Brake, Andrea Renda, Anna Johns, Mercy DeMenno, Daniel Ribeiro, Josh Bruce, Sarah Kerman, Jackie Lin, Neelesh Moorthy, Bochen Han, Rishabh Kumar, Nancy Merlin, Alena Sadiq, Kate Baxter)

Reviewing Retrospective Regulatory Review (presentation by Jackie Lin, Neelesh Moorthy and Sarah Kerman at The Edge Lightning Talks) (December 4, 2015)

The Global Diffusion of Regulatory Impact Assessment (session at World Congress on Risk 2015 chaired by Jonathan Wiener, with related presentations from Bass Connections project team research)


Kate Baxter ’17

Sarah Kerman ’18

Daniel Ribeiro, Law School

This Team in the News

Meet the Members of the Bass Connections Student Advisory Council

Jonathan Wiener Addresses Climate, Catastrophes, Retrospective Review, TTIP, and China’s Environmental Risk Regulation

Three Bass Connections Alums Named as Kenan Graduate Fellows

Anna Johns, Law ’16

Six Students Receive Grants to Extend Their Bass Connections Research

Mercy DeMenno, PhD in Public Policy, Sanford School of Public Policy

See earlier related team, Regulatory Disaster Scene Investigation.

Participation on the team has enriched my own research project. I have been able to share and discuss the results from my dissertation research (e.g., interviews of regulators from the European Commission and the UK); to produce and compare new analyses; and to learn from the different perspectives and backgrounds of my team members. —Daniel Ribeiro

Additional support for this project was provided by the Silver Family Kenan Institute for Ethics Fund in Support of Bass Connections.

Faculty/Staff Team Members

Edward Balleisen, Trinity - History*
Lori Bennear, Nicholas School - Environmental Sciences & Policy*
Elizabeth Brake, Fuqua School of Business
Kimberly Krawiec, Law School
Amy Pickle, Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions
William Pizer, Sanford School of Public Policy
Jonathan Wiener, Law School*

Graduate Team Members

Joshua Bruce, Sociology
Mercy DeMenno, Sanford School of Public Policy - PhD in Public Po
Anna Johns, PhD in History; Law School - JD
Daniel Lima Ribeiro, Law School - SJD

Undergraduate Team Members

Katherine Baxter, History (AB)
Bo Chen Han, Political Science (AB)
Sarah Kerman, Public Policy Studies (AB)
Rishabh Kumar
Jackie Lin
Nancy Merlin, Public Policy Studies (AB)
Neelesh Moorthy
Alena Sadiq

Community Team Members

Multiple Contributors, NC Office of State Budget and Management
Multiple Contributors, US Office of Management and Budget, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs
Benjamin Waterhouse, UNC-Chapel Hill - Dept. of History

* denotes team leader


Completed, Archived