In mid-May, the GW Regulatory Studies Center will host UVA Professor Rachel A. Potter to discuss her new book “Bending the Rules: Procedural Politicking in the Bureaucracy.”
From the University of Chicago Press summary: “With Bending the Rules, Rachel Augustine Potter shows that rulemaking is not the rote administrative activity it is commonly imagined to be but rather an intensely political activity in its own right. Because rulemaking occurs in a separation of powers system, bureaucrats are not free to implement their preferred policies unimpeded: the president, Congress, and the courts can all get involved in the process, often at the bidding of affected interest groups. However, rather than capitulating to demands, bureaucrats routinely employ “procedural politicking,” using their deep knowledge of the process to strategically insulate their proposals from political scrutiny and interference. Tracing the rulemaking process from when an agency first begins working on a rule to when it completes that regulatory action, Potter show how bureaucrats use procedures to resist interference from Congress, the President, and the courts at each stage of the process. This exercise reveals that unelected bureaucrats wield considerable influence over the direction of public policy in the United States.”
I’m especially pleased to host Dr. Potter because she, like me, is an OIRA alum. I was hired to fill her spot (big shoes!) when she left OIRA to be a Bosch Fellow in Germany. I’ve followed her work for years and have particularly enjoyed her contributions to the academic understanding of OIRA and regulatory policy. So this will be a fun event for me because I’ll be the one to interview her about her book. And also we’ll have snacks!
This FREE event will be on May 13 at 3:30pm on GW’s foggy bottom campus. For more info and to RSVP, click here. On behalf of the GW Regulatory Studies Center, I hope to see you there.