The shifting balance of power in the regulatory state: Structure, strategy, and the division of labour

Donald Feaver, Benedict SHEEHY

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Abstract

The objective of this article is to examine the structural change in government that has enabled the politically strategic changes in governance seen in many OECD countries over the past several decades. In so doing, the legal structures and political strategies underlying the regulatory state are explained. Drawing upon classical theories of the division of labour, two distinct divisions of labour ± one legal, the other political ± are identified that provide insight into the relationship between the legal structure and political strategies under-pinning the emergence of the regulatory state. The implications of this article are that it provides a description of how the executive branch has been able to shift the balance of power significantly in its favour while at the same time divesting itself of its core constitutional tasks of governing the administrative arm of government.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)203-226
Number of pages24
JournalJournal of Law and Society
Volume41
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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