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icono de curso

Regulatory Governance


Credits: 4 ECTS

Second semester

Elective Courses




Regulation is about making, enforcing and monitoring rules. From global governance to local politics, policy instruments based on rules are essential to the activity of political institutions, with a strong impact in most facets of our economies and societies. While governing by rules is probably a common purpose of any political community, regulation as a mode of governance has grown exponentially in the past three to four decades over the world, connected to the globalization trends and the expansion of the administrative state. Such changes have opened multiple spaces for the expansion of regulatory policies and their associated bureaucracies, as well as the involvement of multiple stakeholders and concerned audiences. After emerging in the United States of America and Europe, this mode of governance, which aims to separate political and technical decision-making, has diffused to most developed and developing countries in more recent times. This course aims to introduce students to this niche discipline of governance, which in spite of its growing importance, has struggled to establish itself as a discipline, and, because of its inter-disciplinary nature is considered a subset of other disciplines such as law, public administration and management, political science etc.

The course will introduce students to the major academic debates and discourses from this field. In the first part, we will look at the literature from the American and European scholars to understand how this mode of governance emerged, developed and diffused. We also will focus on the distinctive actors and institutions that characterize many areas in which regulatory governance is active (in particular the “independent regulatory agencies”) and on the study of regulatory regimes, from different theoretical perspectives. Thereafter, we are going to look at how developing countries have adapted to the concept of regulatory governance, which are the techniques and instruments introduced, and how are they pushing/challenging the existing discourse. Over the duration of the course students will get familiar with the institutions, actors, and regulatory instruments operating at the global (World Bank, IMF, WHO), regional (EU, OECD), national, and sectoral (IEA, IMO) level. The course will take up few sectors (such as food safety, renewable energy or international finance) to demonstrate the complexity of regulatory governance as it touches upon other concepts such as global governance, multi-level governance etc.