Consultation as Policymaking Innovation: Comparing Government Transparency and Public Participation in China and the United States

November 01, 2019

By Steven J. Balla & Zhoudan Xie
This article compares government transparency and public participation in consultation—a prominent instrument of policymaking innovation—across China and the United States. The analysis specifically focuses on consultation at the Chinese Ministry of Commerce (MOC) and United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)—leading agencies in the implementation of consultation in policymaking in their respective countries—as a means of evaluating best practices in China relative to a corresponding benchmark in the United States. The analysis reveals both similarities and differences in transparency and participation at the MOC and EPA. The findings suggest that differences in the Chinese and American political systems, rather than issues of administrative capacity, are the primary limitations of consultation as a policymaking innovation in contemporary China.

Nuclear War as a Global Catastrophic Risk

September 17, 2019

By: James Scouras
James Scouras identifies nuclear war as a global catastrophic risk and suggests that multidisciplinary studies that combine insights from "historical case studies, expert elicitation, probabilistic risk assessment, complex systems theory, and other disciplines" can address many of the shortcomings of single analytic approaches. He suggests that experts can address current gaps in their assessments of the consequences of nuclear weapons by further investigating understudied phenomena (e.g., the effects of electromagnetic pulses, nuclear winter, the prolonged effects of radiation).

US-EU Regulatory Cooperation: Lessons and Opportunities

April 2016

Unnecessary regulatory differences between countries persist as lingering barriers to trade even as traditional barriers are declining.

The George Washington University Regulatory Studies Center prepared this report as part of a grant from the European Union to analyze opportunities to improve regulatory cooperation between the EU and U.S. The first chapter presents an overview of the research. The case studies in chapters three through five examine how regulatory cooperation has worked in practice between three U.S. regulatory agencies and their EU counterparts. The fifth chapter analyzes regulatory activity in the U.S. likely to have significant effects on international trade and investment. These analyses identify areas of opportunity that can help reduce incompatible approaches and unnecessary costs while indicating areas where regulatory divergences could persist due to jurisdictional judgments of national sovereignty and structural differences between countries.