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The Rise of the Regulatory State

  • Edward L. Glaeser
  • Andrei Shleifer

The Progressive Era of the early twentieth-century U.S. saw significant growth of government regulation of business. We model the choice of law enforcement strategy between private litigation over accidents, regulation of precautions, a combination of the two, and doing nothing. Any of these strategies can be subverted by private parties, at a cost. Private litigation may be more vulnerable to subversion than regulation, especially as the scale of enterprise grows. The rise of regulation is seen as an efficient response to subversion of justice. The model makes sense of the progressive reform agenda. It may also help explain what institutions of law and order are appropriate in what circumstances-a crucial issue for transition economies and emerging markets.

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File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/002205103765762725
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Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal Journal of Economic Literature.

Volume (Year): 41 (2003)
Issue (Month): 2 (June)
Pages: 401-425

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Handle: RePEc:aea:jeclit:v:41:y:2003:i:2:p:401-425
Note: DOI: 10.1257/002205103765762725
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  1. Summers, Lawrence H. & Dickens, William T. & Katz, Lawrence F. & Lang, Kevin, 1989. "Employee Crime and the Monitoring Puzzle," Scholarly Articles 3645199, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  2. Djankov, Simeon & La Porta, Rafael & Lopez-de-Silanes, Florencio & Shleifer, Andrei, 2001. "The Regulation of Entry," Working Paper Series rwp01-015, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  3. Steven Shavell, 1984. "A Model of the Optimal Use of Liability and Safety Regulation," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 15(2), pages 271-280, Summer.
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  8. Edward L. Glaeser, 2001. "Public Ownership in the American City," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1930, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  9. Edward L. Glaeser & Andrei Shleifer, 2001. "A Reason for Quantity Regulation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(2), pages 431-435, May.
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  11. Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1996. "Whither Socialism?," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262691825, June.
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  13. Maxim Boycko & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1993. "Privatizing Russia," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 24(2), pages 139-192.
  14. Gilligan, Thomas W. & Marshall, William J. & Weingast, Barry R., 1987. "Regulation and the Theory of Legislative Choice: The Interstate Commerce Act of 1887," Working Papers 628, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  15. Price V. Fishback & Shawn Everett Kantor, 2000. "A Prelude to the Welfare State: The Origins of Workers' Compensation," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number fish00-1, June.
  16. George J. Stigler, 1971. "The Theory of Economic Regulation," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 2(1), pages 3-21, Spring.
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  18. Gary S. Becker & George J. Stigler, 1974. "Law Enforcement, Malfeasance, and Compensation of Enforcers," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 3(1), pages 1-18, January.
  19. Steven Shavell, 1983. "Liability for Harm Versus Regulation of Safety," NBER Working Papers 1218, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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