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Regulation in Australia

Regulation in Australia

By Arie Freiberg


Regulation in Australia is the successor to Freiberg’s well-received title The Tools of Regulation published in 2010. This substantially enlarged work adopts an expansive approach to government regulation, viewing it as an arm of public policy that provides an understanding of what governments do and how they do it, rather than as a technical exercise in rule-making and compliance.

Over 17 chapters, Regulation in Australia provides a comprehensive analysis of the nature of regulation, its historical origins in Australia and its development over the past two centuries, why governments regulate and who regulates whom at the federal, state and local government levels.

Management of the regulatory process, the principles of good regulation and red tape in regulation are examined. The role of soft law, prescriptive, performance-based and principle-based regulation, as well as the use of rewards and incentives in regulation is also explored. How governments use economic, transactional informational and structural regulatory tools and authority tools is extensively discussed. The book examines why people or organisations do or do not comply, what enforcement measures can be used in the event of non-compliance and broad regulatory strategies used by governments.

Regulation in Australia provides an accessible introduction to regulation which is firmly grounded in Australian law and practice. It will appeal to regulators, policy makers, lawyers and students of regulation.


* View Detailed Table of Contents

Foreword by Professor Gary Banks AO
List of Chapters
List of Diagrams
Table of Cases
Table of Statutes

1.  What is Regulation?
2.  A History of Australian Regulation
3.  Why Regulate?
4.  Who Regulates?
5.  Managing the Regulatory Process
6.  Regulatory Methods
7.  Economic Regulation
8.  Transactional Regulation
9.  Authorisation as Regulation
10. Informational Regulation
11. Structural Regulation
12. Compliance
13. Enforcement and Sanctions
14. Regulatory Strategies
15. Evaluating Regulation
16. Why Regulation May Fail
17. The Future of Regulation and Regulating the Future

Appendix 1
Appendix 2


This book provides interesting theory on the regulation which provides the background to what lawyers do every day. The author defines regulation as “intervention by public sector actors in . . . economic and social activities”. This includes legislation, taxes, registration and licensing in the pursuit of public policy.
         It opens with a history of regulation in Australia, and largely comprises chapters on why regulate, who regulates, managing the regulatory process, regulatory methods, economic regulation, transactional regulation, authorisation as regulation, informational regulation, structural regulation, compliance, enforcement and sanctions, regulatory strategies and evaluating regulation. The final chapters discuss why regulation may fail, and the future of regulation and regulating the future. There are 24 diagrams such as “when to regulate”, “who to regulate”, “enforcement pyramid” and “regulatory tools”. Appendix 1 contains a list of Commonwealth, state and territory regulators. Appendix 2 contains a Comprehensive Regulation Act 2025 described as “an either aspirational or apocalyptic vision of an all-encompassing regulatory statute”.
         The book contains a user-friendly glossary of definitions from those familiar to practitioners like “co-regulation” to jargon like “compliance gap” and “wicked problem”. As well, there is a bibliography, including citations of reports by the ACCC, ASIC, BCA, Productivity Commission and governments.
         This is a useful book which will remind practitioners of their role in the regulatory process.

Paul Latimer, InPrint, Law Institute Journal Victoria, April 2018


Published 7 August 2017
Publisher The Federation Press
ISBN 9781760021399
Australian RRP $95.00
International Price $86.36
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Government / Political Studies

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