Regulatory Improvement

Regulatory accumulation – the relentless layering of new rules atop old ones over decades – can smother economic innovation and investment. Continuously improving the regulatory environment for entrepreneurship and growth is integral to progressive efforts to make government work better.

Publications

By / 12.13.2016

Economists often apply the term “opportunity costs” to high and middle-income people, meaning that the time they spend on one task is time not available to perform other, potentially more valuable tasks. But social scientists rarely apply the concept to low-income people, acting as if their time is essentially worthless. Sort of like the spouse […]

By and / 12.10.2015

Economists and policymakers are always lauding innovation. In its purest form, innovation is like a free lunch: it boosts growth and incomes, creates good jobs, and opens up new possibilities for social reform and social mobility. Today, innovation is needed more than ever. Productivity growth has been slowing in recent years. The 10-year growth rate […]

By and / 5.9.2013

The natural accumulation of federal regulations over time imposes an unintended but significant cost to businesses and to economic growth. However, no effective process currently exists for retrospectively improving or removing regulations. This paper first puts forward three explanations for how regulatory accumulation itself imposes an economic burden, and how this burden has historically been […]

Press

By / 5.28.2015

The Federal Communications Commission injected a considerable amount of uncertainty into the high-tech sector in February when it reclassified Internet service providers (ISPs) as public utilities. If it is upheld by the courts, the Open Internet Order—which inserts the government directly into private dealings between ISPs and firms that generate or aggregate Internet content—will drag […]

By / 11.15.2014

President Obama’s call this week to regulate the Internet as a public utility is like pushing to replace the engine of a car that runs perfectly well. The U.S. data sector — including wired and wireless broadband — is the envy of the world, administering a powerful boost to consumer welfare, generating high-paying jobs and […]

WASHINGTON—The amount of regulation on the pharmaceutical industry has increased 40 percent since 2000, according to a policy memo released today by the Progressive Policy Institute (PPI). Moreover, some new draft regulations proposed by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) this year fail to embrace data-driven innovation. In FDA Regulation in the Data-Driven Economy, PPI […]

Blog

By / 7.29.2017

We think of the United States as a low-inflation economy, with an overall price increase of 36% since 2000, or less than 2% a year.  But the fact is, the inflation  performance of different industries has varied greatly since 2000.  For example, the price of construction has gone up more than 100% since 2000, as […]

By / 5.6.2016

Productivity growth in the United States continues to slump.  The latest numbers from the BLS show that multifactor productivity growth was only a tiny 0.2% in 2015. In particular, gross medical productivity of the US healthcare system fell by 1.2% in 2015, according to PPI’s calculations.* That’s after two years of ticking up slightly. Falling […]

House Republicans this week are expected to take up the ponderously titled Searching for and Cutting Regulations that are Unnecessarily Burdensome Act (SCRUB) of 2015 (H.R. 1155). The Progressive Policy Institute, a strong advocate for regulatory improvement, urges progressives to oppose this highly partisan bill. Over the last three years, PPI has worked with reform-minded […]