This Policy Brief is the latest in a series on Ethical Business Practice (EBP) and Ethical Business Regulation (EBR). It summarizes current thinking on these topics, based on a Conference held at Wolfson College, Oxford on 4 May 2018.
Drawing on the scientific findings of behavioural psychology research, the authors find that there is little empirical evidence that traditional theories of deterrence affect future business behaviour, and that a collaborative, positive approach between business and regulators is most effective in improving behaviour along ethical lines.
Traditional policy on encouraging private enforcement of law is based on deterrence, and approaches to enforcement and hence regulation produce an adversarial culture. While some public regulatory and enforcement authorities cling to deterrence as their sole policy, a number of authorities in some countries (led by the UK) have moved to a supportive approach, as a result of practical experience and the impact of Better Regulation policy.
The policy brief identifies the civil aviation industry as leading the way in adopting an open, just (no blame) culture, which is essential if performance is to be maintained. The initiation of ethical business practice (EBP) has to come from the businesses themselves, individually or in sectors, and based on the organizational values as identified at all levels within the organizational structure, rather than as a 'tick box' or compliance-based approach.
The policy brief concludes with implications of the findings for policymakers, calling on politicians to support an EBP/EBR policy, as has already been the case in Scotland, where senior Scottish ministers have indicated that they will follow a no-blame approach.
Chief Ombudsman of the Ombudsman Service Lewis Shand Smith assesses the major shifts being felt across the civil justice landscape in the UK, in this policy brief published in association with Ombudsman Services.
The policy brief explores the implications of the recent European Commission Directive 2013/11/EU, due for implementation before the next UK general election in 2015, which requires Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) entities to be available for all business-to-consumer disputes.
This report examines the significant changes to the European legal system in recent years – including the increasing role of alternative dispute resolution (ADR), Consumer ADR (CDR), ombudsmen, and regulatory redress as alternatives to litigation and collective actions – and assesses to what degree these approaches could be adopted in China.
This Policy Brief summarizes the findings of a joint project between Oxford University and the Catholic University of Leuven aimed at evaluating different mechanisms for delivering collective redress. It identifies eleven principles for market regulation, and the three principal goals for collective redress of delivering compensation, affecting the future behaviour of markets, and achieving these goals in a timely and cost-efficient way.