Point/Counterpoint: Valuing Internalities in Regulatory Impact Analysis

JPAM journal cover

by Brian Mannix, Research Professor, & Susan Dudley, Director

May 13, 2015

Brian Mannix & Susan Dudley debate Hunt Allcott & Cass Sunstein in the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, Vol. 34, Issue 3, Summer 2015

In this Point/Counterpoint series of 4 articles in the new issue of the Journal of Policy Analysis & Management, Brian Mannix & Susan Dudley engage in a back-and-forth with Hunt Allcott & Cass Sunstein on the advisability of regulatory interventions based solely on "internalities," which Allcott & Sunstein define as "costs we impose on ourselves by taking actions that are not in our own best interest." In "The Limits of Irrationality as a Rationale for Regulation" and "Please Don't Regulate my Internalities," Mannix & Dudley warn that "allowing regulators to control consumers 'for their own good' – based on some deficiency in the consumers themselves rather than any failure in the marketplace – is to abandon any serious attempt to keep regulatory policy grounded in any objective notion of the public good." (Let us know if you cannot access these articles.)

Read the full articles in the Journal of Policy Analysis & Management