Keeping control of regulation? Domestic constraints on the creation of independent authorities in emerging and developing economies

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Abstract

Regulatory independence has become an international norm over the past decades. Yet, governments in some emerging and developing economies have eschewed the model. We argue that this outcome is shaped by the domestic institutional context; in particular, authoritarianism and traditions of state control over the economy. Analyzing new data on the adoption and operation of independent competition authorities between 1990 and 2017, we find that authoritarianism and, to some extent, state-led economic traditions negatively affect formal adoption. By contrast, these institutional constraints do not have much impact on the start of the operations, which seems to be driven primarily by capacity and economic need. Our findings shed light on domestic institutional constraints on the spread of international norms and the limits of “regulatory transplants” in the Global South.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)545-564
Number of pages20
JournalGovernance
Volume34
Issue number2
Early online date15 Jul 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2021

Keywords

  • regulatory agencies
  • independence
  • competition policy
  • regulatory state
  • emerging and developing economies

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