A new panel for the ECPR General Conference in Hamburg (22-25 August 2018) is being organized under the Section on Regulatory Governance, entitled: ‘Faith in the Power of Expertise? Regulators, Industry and the Public.’

Panel abstract:

“Faith in the power of expertise as an engine of social improvement – technical expertise which neither legislators, courts nor bureaucratic generalists presumably possess – has always been an important source of legitimisation for regulators” (Majone 1997: 152)

In this panel, we focus on the role of expertise in the regulatory process. We start out from Majone’s argument about faith in the power of expertise provided by regulatory authorities. Taking up the argument in the literature on private authority that business equally disposes “special expertise” (Cutler 1999:4), we further expand this view to the role of industry in the regulatory process. More specifically, we seek to explore: Under which conditions is regulatory and private expertise considered to be legitimate? How do experts seek to generate faith in their role in the regulatory process, notably vis-à-vis the public?

We look for contributions from different theoretical angles, covering regulatory authorities and/or business actors in different sectors such as financial markets, network industries, environmental policy or risk regulation. Papers covering cases that involve distrust or crisis of expert schemes are of particular interest to us.

Scholars interested in submitting presenting a paper, as well as those seeking more info on the conference, please see https://ecpr.eu/Events/EventDetails.aspx?EventID=115

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