Trust, culture and the limits of management-based regulation: Lessons from the mining industry

Neil Gunningham , Darren SINCLAIR

Research output: A Conference proceeding or a Chapter in BookChapterpeer-review


For over a decade, private enterprise and governments in North America, Western Europe and Australasia have been experimenting with an innovative approach to standard-setting variously termed ‘process-based’, ‘systems-based’ or ‘management-based’ regulation (Coglianese and Lazar 2003). In contrast with traditional prescriptive standards (which tell duty holders precisely what measures to take) or performance standards (which specify outcomes or the desired level of performance), this approach involves firms developing their own process and management system standards and developing internal planning and management practices designed to achieve regulatory or corporate
goals. Such standards—whether they are imposed by the firm on its various operations (internal regulation), by governments on firms or by industry associations on their members (external regulation)—have the considerable attractions of providing flexibility to enterprises to devise their own least-cost solutions to social challenges, of facilitating their going beyond compliance with minimum legal standards and of being applicable to a broad range of circumstances and to heterogeneous enterprises.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRegulatory Theory
Subtitle of host publicationFoundations and applications
EditorsPeter Drahos
Place of PublicationCanberra, Australia
PublisherThe Australian National University
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9781760461027
ISBN (Print)9781760461010
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Externally publishedYes


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