New book! TBGIs: Advancing Marginalized Actors and Enhancing Regulatory Quality

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The TBGI project’s latest edited collection is now available from Edward Elgar Publishing!

Transnational Business Governance Interactions: Advancing Marginalized Actors and Enhancing Regulatory Quality asks when and how TBGIs—the complex overlaps, intersections and encounters amongst actors and institutions involved in the transnational regulation of business—can be harnessed to enhance the quality of transnational regulation and empower weaker actors. Exploring developments in issue areas from climate change to derivatives trading, and in industry sectors from agriculture to sports, this interdisciplinary book presents new empirical research, theory and practical insight into this question from 22 leading and emerging scholars of transnational regulatory governance.

The book is edited by Stepan Wood, Canada Research Chair in Law, Society and Sustainability, University of British Columbia, Canada; Rebecca Schmidt, Assistant Professor of Law, Dublin City University, Ireland; Errol Meidinger, SUNY Distinguished Professor and Margaret W. Wong Professor of Law, Buffalo School of Law, The State University of New York, US; Burkard Eberlein, Professor of Public Policy and Strategic Management, Schulich School of Business, York University, Canada; and Kenneth W. Abbott, Jack E. Brown Professor of Law emeritus, Arizona State University, US.

The book’s seventeen chapters explore developments spanning six business sectors (agri-food, energy, finance, fisheries, forestry and sport) and ten issue areas (climate change, deforestation, derivatives trading, event management, food safety, financial technology, indigenous rights, labour standards, sustainable resource management and sustainable supply chain management), plus numerous multi-sectoral developments.  

The chapters present a multi-disciplinary variety of theoretical and methodological perspectives, from “new governance” to legal pluralism, social network analysis and Coxian political economy. The editors’ introductory chapter builds upon the TBGI analytical framework by consolidating theories of regulatory quality, capacity, outputs, outcomes and impacts, responsive or “smart” regulation, marginalization and social fields into a unified framework for inquiry. The concluding chapter applies this framework to draw conclusions about the conditions in which TBGIs can be steered in productive directions–that is, directions that enhance the quality of transnational business regulation, advance the interests of marginalized actors in transnational governance contests, or both.

The book identifies four conditions–or more accurately, constellations of conditions–that favour such steering: compatibility of regulatory actors’ goals and capacities; legitimacy deficits and differentials; organizational clusters of regulatory capacities; and open and inclusive governance structures. It also identifies five factors that can cut both ways, promoting or hindering productive TBGIs depending on the circumstances: uneven regulatory resource distributions; regulatory entrepreneurs; regulatory environments; iterative regulatory cycles; and cross-scalar (micro, meso or macro) linkages. Finally, the chapters reveal three conditions that consistently disfavour regulatory quality and marginalized actors, namely incompatibility of regulatory goals or capacities; conflicting interests; and mismatched problem-solving logics.

Drawing together strands from several cognate literatures, the book proposes significant advances in theoretical and applied knowledge of the dynamics and effects of transnational governance. 

"Transnational Business Governance Interactions provides a detailed exploration of whether and how interactions between the transnational regulatory governance regimes of businesses in a range of sectors can be harnessed by those participating in them to improve regulatory quality and advance the interests of marginalised actors. It provides a rich set of case studies which examine when and how such interactions can be productive or constraining, and deepens our theoretical understandings of this important area of polycentric regulatory governance."
Julia Black
London School of Economics and Political Science

If you want to check out the book before you buy, the front matter, introductory chapter and index are available for free download from ElgarOnline, and preliminary versions of all the chapters are available as TBGI Working Papers.