Why regulators expands their role
In the current issue of Governance (23.1), Moshe Maor questions the prevailing view that regulatory agencies are “more or less passive actors involving their purview.” Drawing on a study of the US Food and Drug Administration, Maor suggests that regulators will “claim jurisdiction” when new information becomes available about the potential for serious harm from a new technology, or when rival regulators attempt to extend their own jurisdiction over that technology. The underlying concern is to protect organizational reputation. Jurisdictional claiming may not always be rational, Maor argues: “Agency officials do not have all the rational capacity and time to choose the best course of action.” And regulators can act unilaterally, without assurance that political actors will support their jurisdictional claims. Read more: Organizational Reputation and Jurisdictional Claims: The Case of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.