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The Foundation for Law, Justice and Society (FLJS) is an independent not-for-profit institution that aims to promote an understanding of the role of law in society. We identify and analyse issues of contemporary interest and importance, disseminating the insights of decision-makers and experts to a global audience through our extensive online resource of free-to-download Policy Briefings, Opinion Pieces, and multimedia podcasts.

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Ethical Business Regulation

Christopher Hodges
Publication date: 
Fri, 16 Sep 2016

This policy brief outlines the concept of Ethical Business Regulation (EBR), which aims to foster a business culture of mutual engagement, respect, learning, and constant improvement, based on social trust.

In the policy brief, the author, Professor Chris Hodges, develops ideas published by the UK Government as an Annexe to the Review of Ethics for Regulators conducted by the Committee on Standards in Public Life. The concept is based on existing evidence on why people observe or break rules, on how culture can support continuous performance and innovation, and commercial success, and was recently endorsed in the UN's Manual on Consumer Protection.

The policy brief provides an assessment of current examples and empirical evidence of successful applications of EBR in industries including civil aviation, energy, and pharmaceuticals. It develops the concept of an open and just 'no blame' culture, to encourage voluntary reporting of failures to meet regulatory standards and to enable adequate measures to be put in place to address the issue.

The objective is to build on this evidence to enhance business performance in compliance with the values of society, and hence to boost economic growth.